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GREAT WAR l86l-'65. 




(Lieut. -Colonel Seventieth Regiment N. C. T.)- 




E. M. UzzELL, Printer and Binder. 




Preface v 

Generals from North Carolina, by the Editor xi 

Regiments and Brigades, by the Editor xiii 

Naval Ofpiobhs from North Carolina, by the Editor xiv 

Organization — • 

Adjutant-General's Department, by Major A. Gordon 3 

Quartermaster-General's Department, by Major A. Gordon— 23 

Subsistence Department, by Major A. Gordon 37 

Ordnance Department, by Major A. Gordon 39 

Pay Department, by Major A. Gordon 45 

Board op Claims, by Major A. Gordon 45 

Adjutant-General's Department, by Major W, A. Graham 50 

Bethel Regiment, by Major E. J. Hale 69 

First Regiment, by Colonel H. A. Brown 135 

Second Regiment, by Captain Matt. Manly 157 

Third Regiment, by Captains John Cowan and J. I. Metis 177 

Third Regiment, by Colonel W. L. DeRosset 215 

Fourth Regiment, by Colonel E. A. Osborne 229 

Fifth Regiment, by Maj. J, C. MacRae and Sergt.-maj. C. M. Busbee, 281 

Sixth Regiment, by Captain Neill W. Ray 293 

Sixth Regiment, by Major A. C. Avery 337 

Seventh Regiment, by Captain J. S. Harris 361 

Eighth Regiment, by Drummer H. T. J. Ludwig 387 

Ninth Regiment (First Oav.), by General Riifus Barringer 417 

Ninth Regiment (First Cav.), by Colonel W. H. Cheek 445, 775 

Tenth Regiment (First Art.), Companies B, F, G, H, K (Heavy 

Batteries), by Colonel S. B. Pool 489 

Tenth Regiment (same Companies), by Lieutenant J. W. Sanders — 499 
Tenth Regiment, Company C (Light Battery), by Captain A. B. 

Williams 537 

Tenth Regiment, Light Batteries A, D, F and I, by Captain J. A. 

Ramsay j 551 

Eleventh Regiment, by Col. W. J. Martin and Capt. E. R. Outlaw, 583 

Twelfth Regiment, by Lieutenant W. A. Montgomery 605 

Thirteenth Regiment, by Captain R. S. Williams 653 

Thirteenth Regiment, by Adjutant N. S. Smith 689 

Thirteenth Regiment, by T. L. Rawley 701 

Fourteenth Regiment, by Colonel R. T. Bennett 705 

Fifteenth Regiment, by Lieutenant H. C. Kearney 733 

Sixteenth Regiment, by Lieutenant B. H. Cathey 751 

Sixteenth Regiment, by Captain L. Harrill 771 


More than two thousand years ago Pericles, speaking of his 
countrymen who had fallen in a great war, said: "In all time to 
come, whenever there shall be speech of great deeds they shall 
be had in remembrance." More truly than to the Athenian 
soldiery can these memorable words be applied to those North 
Carolinians who for four long years carried the fortunes of the 
Confederacy upon the points of their bayonets. 

With a voting population at the outbreak of the war of less 
than 115,000, North Carolina furnished to the Confederate cause, 
as appears from Major Gordon's article herein, 127,000 troops, 
or more than one-fifth of the men who marched beneath the South- 
ern Cross, in addition to the Militia and Home Guards who ren- 
dered useful, though short, tours of duty, under State au- 
thority. In the first battle of the war, at Bethel, North Caro- 
lina was at the front and the first man killed in battle was Wyatt 
from Edgecombe. When the great tragedy was closing at Appo- 
mattox it was the men of Cox's North Carolina Brigade, of 
Grimes' Division, who fired the last volley at the foe. The two 
great pivotal battles of the war were Gettysburg in the East and 
Chickamauga in the West. Upon them turned the issue of the 
great struggle, and in both the men who fell farthest to the front, 
nearest to the muzzles of the enemy's guns, were from North 
Carolina regiments. This is demonstrated not only by the nar- 
ratives of eye-witnesses in these volumes but by the monuments 
which the Federal Government has erected on those great battle- 
fields to indicate the "high-water mark" to which the tide of 
Southern success rose, and from which, after those days of historic 
struggle, it painfully and slowly but surely ebbed away. 

Not, therefore, in boast, but in sober historic truth, on the 
cover of these volumes, has been inscribed the lines which tell 
the story of North Carolina's fidelity to duty: 

VI Preface. . 

"First at Bethel. 

Farthest to the Front at Gettysburg and 


Last at Appomattox." 

It is to tell the plain, unvarnished story of the men at the 
front that these sketches have been written by those who partici- 
pated therein, and by the authority and at the expense of the 
State they are now printed in order to hand down to posterity an 
authentic account of what the soldiery of this State suffered and 
did in the discharge of their duty. It was inscribed upon the 
stones piled above the Spartan dead who died at Thermopylae: 
"Stranger, go tell it in Lacedemon that we lie here in obedience 
to her command." North Carolina can never forget that in 
obedience to her command more than 40,000 of her bravest, best 
and brightest young men fill soldiers' graves from "the farthest 
north" at Gettysburg to that far Southern shore 

" Where the mightiest river runs, mingling with their fame forever." 

These dead have not died in vain. The cause of Southern 
Independence for which they fell has passed forever from 
among men. Not an advocate remains. But as long as valor 
shall move the hearts of men, as long as the patient endurance 
of hardship, and fatigue, and danger in the discharge of duty 
shall touch us, as long as the sacrifice of life for the good of 
one's country shall seem noble and grand, so long shall the 
memory of the deeds recorded in the plain, sober narratives in 
these volumes, written by men whose gallantry is surpassed only 
by their modesty, and who were more eager to handle the sword 
than to use the pen, be preserved and cherished by their coun- 

The story of these volumes is briefly told. At the meeting 
of the State Confederate Veterans Association at Raleigh, N. C, 
in October, 1894, on motion of Judge A. C. Avery, seconded by 
F. H. Busbee, Esq., it was 

"Resolved, That a history of each regiment and organization 
from North Carolina which served in the Confederate Army 

Preface. vii 

shall be prepared by a member thereof, and that Judge Walter 
Clark be requested to select the historians from each command 
and to supervise and edit the work; and further, that the Gen- 
eral Assembly be memorialized to have these sketches printed at 
the expense of the State." 

On motion of Captain W. H. Day, Judge A. C. Avery, Gen- 
eral Robert F. Hoke and Lieutenant-Colonel Wharton J. Green 
were appointed a committee to present this memorial and pro- 
cure the passage of the legislation desired. 

Already at that date (1894) nearly thirty years had passed 
since the close of hostilities and the steady advance of the years 
had driven gaps in our ranks wider than those made by the leaden 
hail of battle. Suitable men for the work were difficult to find 
for many of the regiments, and when found they often pleaded 
the press of business, loss of memory and increasing infirmities. 
But by persistent effort competent historians were secured for 
each regiment, except the 73d, 74th, 76th, 77th and 78th. (which 
being Senior Reserves, over forty-five years of age during the war, 
had few survivors left), and some of the battalions. As to the 
Senior Reserves, the only resource was to utilize some sketches 
heretofore written. 

But here another difficulty arose. Among those who promised 
to write the story of their regiments some died and others procras- 
tinated. The latter class was large by reason of the failure of the 
General Assemblies of 1896 and 1897 to assume the publication 
by the State. This, however, was done by the General Assembly 
of 1899, the bill being introduced and eloquently championed 
by Hon. H. Clay Wall, member from Richmond county and 
historian of the Twenty-third Regiment. Upon the passage of 
the act the vacancies caused by death or declination were filled 
up and the remaining sketches (with a few exceptions) being in 
hand by the spring of 1900, and the others promised, publication 
was begun. The printing was, for certain causes, however, so 
much delayed that the General Assembly of 1901 passed an act to 
expedite the completion of the work, which is now guaranteed to 
be finished during the current year. 

VIII Preface. 

The work of the several historians and of the Editor has of 
course been one of love and without pecuniary compensation. 
We would that our labors could have been worthier of the sub- 
ject and of our noble comrades living and dead. The State 
assumed the cost of publication and the work is its property, as 
the deeds it commemorates are the noblest inheritance of its 
people and their sure gage of fame. 

It was thought that it would add vividness to these pen-and- 
ink sketches of their deeds to give engravings of as many of the 
actors in those stirring times as could be readily obtainable. The 
selection of these was left, of course, to the several regimental 
historians. No line was drawn at rank. The only restriction 
has been that each picture shall have been taken "during the 
war or soon thereafter" — the object being to present the men as 
they then looked — and that the subject made an honorable record 
in the Great War. Major C. L. Patton, a Southerner residing 
in New York City and the head of a great publishing house, 
kindly and without remuneration undertook the supervision of 
the engravings and their proper grouping to go with the histo- 
ries of their respective commands. In this way it is believed 
that the interest of the work has been greatly enhanced and that 
this will grow as the years diminish the number of survivors. 
Many of their descendants, perchance, will look back as a patent 
of nobility to the men whose names or whose features are pre- 
served in these volumes. The cost of the engravings has heen 
defrayed by the relatives or friends of the parties. A few maps 
have been also added to illustrate the text. 

The requirement that the history of each command should be 
written by a member thereof was to insure authenticity. But as 
by reason of wounds or other temporary absence few men were 
every day of the four years present with their commands, and the 
lapse of time might cause errors of memory, the several historians 
were requested to refresh their memories by conversation and cor- 
respondence with their surviving comrades, and they also had 
access to the publication by the Government of the invaluable 
series of "Official Records of the Union and Confederate 

Preface. ix 

Armies." In addition, the sketch of each regiment as sent in 
was published in the newspaper of largest circulation in the 
section in which the regiment was principally raised, and sur- 
vivors were requested to note errors and omissions and to com- 
municate them to the writer of the regimental history. 

This was a heavy tax upon the columns of the press, but with 
the patriotism which has always characterized the editors of 
North Carolina this service was cheerfully and freely rendered 
without charge or compensation. The Confederate Veterans 
of North Carolina are greatly indebted for this great service in 
rendering onr histories more full and accurate to the Raleigh 
News and Observer and Morning Post, the Wilmington Messen- 
ger and Star, the Charlotte Observer, the Fayetteville Observer, 
the New Bern Journal, the Asheville Citizen, the Wayuesville 
Courier, and perhaps others. 

During the compilation of these sketches we have, up to this 
date, lost no less than nine of the writers of these sketches by 
death. Captain John Cowan, TJiird North Carolina; Captain 
Neill W. Ray, Sixth North Carolina; Professor H. T. J. Lud- 
wig. Eighth North Carolina; General Rufus Barringer, Ninth 
North Carolina ; Colonel Stephen D. Pool, Tenth North Caro- 
lina; Colonel W. J. Martin, Eleventh North Carolina; Sergeant 
H. C. Wall, Twenty-third North Carolina; General Robert B. 
Vance, Twenty-ninth North Carolina; Captain M. V. Moore, 
Sixth-fifth North Carolina, and there were others who died 
before completing their sketches and for whom substitutes were 

If errors or omissions of importance are discovered by any of 
our comrades as these volumes successively issue from the press, 
they are requested to promptly communicate the needed correc- 
tion to the historian of the regiment concerned, that proper 
amendment maj' be made among the Errata in the last volume. 
The most scrupulous and exact accuracy is earnestly desired in 
these volumes. 

North Carolina has grandly known how to make history. She 
has till now always left it to others to write it. Hence she has 

X Preface. 

never had full justice done the memory of her sons. With 
these volumes the reproach is taken away. Herein the historian 
will find authentic, reliable material, compiled by the gallant men 
who saw the deeds they narrate. From these volumes some yet 
unborn Thucydides or Macaulay of the future may draw some 
of his material for that history which shall transmit to all time 
the story of this most memorable struggle, and the historians 
in these pages shall have thus contributed their share in per- 
petuating the fame of their State and of their comrades to the 
most distant times. Walter Clark. 

Raleigh, N. C, 

26 April, 1901. 


By WALTER CLARK, LiEUT.-Coi,. Seventieth N. C. T. 

From General Ainsworth, Chief of the Eecord and Pension OflBce at 
Washington, in whose custody are the "Archives of the War Depart- 
ment of the Confederate States," I have procured the following certified 
list of the Generals appointed from North Carolina, with the date of com- 
mission of the highest rank attained by each, and graded accordingly to 
seniority of commission: 

^^ame. Bate of Rank. 

1. Thbophilus H. Holmes 10 October, 1862 

2. *Daniel H. Hill (not sent to Senate) 11 July, 1863 


1. W. H. C. Whiting (killed in battle) 28 February, 1863 

2. BoBEKT Ransom, Jr 26 May, 1863 

3. William D. Pender (killed in battle) 27 May, 1863 

4. Robert F. Hoke 20 April, 1864 

5. tSiEPHEN D. Ramsbue (killed in battle) 1 June, 1864 

6. Bryan Grimes 15 February, 1865 


1. Richard C. Gatlin 8 July, 1861 

2. L. O'B. Branch (killed in battle) 16 November, 1861 

3. J. Johnston Pettigrew (killed in battle) 26 February, 1862 

4. James G. Martin 15 May, 1862 

5. Thomas L. Clingman '---17 May, 1862 

6. George B. Anderson (killed in battle) 9 June, 1862 

7. Junius Daniel (killed in battle) 1 September, 1862 

8. James H. Lane 1 November, 1862 

9. John R. Cooke 1 November, 1862 

10. Robert B. Vance 1 March, 1863 

11. Alfred M. Scales 13 June, 1863 

12. Matthew W. Ransom 13 June, 1863 

13. Lawrence S. Baker 23 July, 1863 

14. William W. Kirkland 29 August, 1863 

15. Robert D. Johnston 1 September, 1863 

16. Jambs B. Gordon (killed in battle) 28 September, 1863 

17. tWiLLiAM R. Coz (temporary) 31 May, 1864 

XII Generals from North Carolina. 

18. tTHOMAS F. Toon (temporary) 31 May, 1864' 

19. tW. Gaston Lewis (temporary) 31 May, 1864 

20. RuFus Baheinger IJune, 1864 

21. fJoHN D. Bakey (temporary) _. ,3 August, 1864 

22. Aechibald C. Godwin (killed in battle) 5 August, 1864 

23. William MacRae 4 November, 1864 

24. CoLLETT Leventhoepe 3 February, 1865 

25. William P. Roeeets 21 February, 1865 

This is a full list of the Generals appointed from North Carolina. 
There were several other Generals who were born in North Carolina but 
who went into the service from other States of which they had become 
citizens and which justly claim them, as Generals Braxton Bragg, Cad- 
mus M. Wilcox, Jeremy F. Gilmer, Gabriel J. Rains, Felix ZollicOfFer, 
Ben. McCullough, and possibly others. On the other hand. General D. 
H. Hill, born in South Carolina, had long been a citizen of this State, and 
General W. H. C. Whiting, born in Mississippi, and General John R. 
Cooke, of Missouri, threw in their lot with us and were appointed from 
this State and commanded North Carolina troops the whole war. 

General James Conner, of South Carolina, and General Alfred Iverson 
for a whilecommanded North Carolina brigades, but they were appointed 
from their respective States and do not figure properly in a list of Gen- 
rals from North Carolina. 

It is worthy of note that one-half of the Major-Generals and one in 
four of the Brigadier-Generals from this State were killed in battle or 
died of wounds during the war. 

The parole lists at Appomattox were signed by Bryan Grimes, Major 
General, and by James H. Lane, John R. Cooke, Matt. W. Ransom, 
William R. Cox, William MaoRae and William P. Roberts as Brigadier 
Generals. " Official Records of Union and Confederate Armies, Vol. 95, 
pp. 1S77-1S79." The parole lists at surrender of Johnston's army were 
signed by Daniel H. Hill and Robert F. Hoke as Major-Generals, and 
Thomas L. Clingman, W. W. Kirkland and Lawrence S. Baker, Briga- 
dier-Generals. " Official Records of Union and Confederate Armies, Vol. 

*Por some unexplained reason, President Davis did not send in General Hill's appoint- 
ment as LieatenantGenerat to the Senate and he was never confirmed as such by'that 
body, though at the President's request and by virtue of the President's appointment 
he served in that capacity. As LieatenantGeneral he commanded a corps in the Army 
of the West at Chicbamauga in 1863. Later he resljmed his rank of Major-Genera!. 

fMajor-General Ramseur was a temporary Major-General, and Brigadiei'-Generals Cox, 
Toon, Lewis and Barry were temporary Brigadier-Generals. These temporary appoint- 
ments were peculiar to the Confederate army. They were made to a command whose 
head was absent in prison or wounded, upon whose return It was contemplated that the 
temporary appointee would go baoli to his previous rank, though while occupying Iiis 
temporary grade he had the same rank and authority as if permanently appointed. In 
point of fact, each of such appointees held his rank to the close save General Barry," who 
went back to the colonelcy ot the Eighteenth Eegiment, being disabled by wounds' very 
soon after his appointment, whereupon General Conner was temporarily placed in com- 
mand of the brigade until the return of General Lane, the permanent Brigadier who 
had been absent wounded. ' 

Generals from NoiiTH Carolina. xiii 

98, pp. 1061-1066." The other general officers from North Carolina 
above named were at the time of the above surrenders either dead, or 
■wounded, prisoners or on detached service. 


North Carolina furnished seventy-eight full regiments and some twenty 
battalions to the Confederacy, besides a few scattering companies and a 
large number of individuals who served in commands from other States, 
of both which latter we have no data recorded in these volumes. The 
composition of brigades was so often changed that it was found useless 
to record it here. Of the regiments the Tenth, Thirty-sixth and For- 
tieth were artillery, and the Ninth, Nineteenth, Forty-flrst, Fifty-ninth, 
Sixty-third, Sixty-fifth and Seventy-fifth were cavalry regiments. Most 
of the battalions were artillery or cavalry. 

The Seventieth, Seventy-first and Seventy-second Regiments and three 
battalions were Junior Reserves — boys seventeen years of age, who, 
however, did good service at the battles of Southwest Creek and Benton- 
ville, and a portion of them at the bombardments of Wilmington and of 
Fort Branch on the Roanoke, and in other minor actions. They were 
brigaded and were commanded first by Colonel F. S. Armistead, then by 
Colonel Nethercutt and later by General L. S. Baker, and composed one 
of the brigades of Hoke's Division. They also aided at Belfield, Va., to 
repulse the enemy's advance southward. 

The Seventy-third, Seventy-fourth, Seventy-sixth, Seventy-seventh 
and Seventy-eighth were Senior Reserves, between the ages of forty-five 
and fifty, and rendered good service, a portion of them being under fire. 

All the above, being regularly in the Confederate service, have a part 
in these volumes. 

Besides these there were regiments and battalions of Home Guards, 
composed of those exempt from Confederate service by reason of being 
State officers (as justices of the peace, county officials, etc.), or for other 
causes, who rendered service from time to time, for short tours of duty, 
under the orders of the Governor. Also, in the early part of 1862 there 
was service rendered by Militia ordered out for short periods, in emer- 
gency, notably those under- Brigadier-Generals David Clark, Collett 
Leventhorpe and Jesse R. Stubbs for the defense of the Roanoke after 
the fall of Roanoke Island, and a regiment of Militia shared in the battle 
of New Bern. There was also doubtless valuable service rendered by 
the Militia in other parts of the State. But from the scope of this work, 
and the dearth of material at this late date, no adequate account is 
herein given of the services of our Militia and Home Guards, though 
at the time their aid was valuable. 

XIV Generals from North Carolina. 


The following appear, in the Confederate Archives, as the highest 
officers in the Navy, appointed from North Carolina, though there were 
many others of lesser rank: 

Name, Date of Rank. 

James W. Cooke Captain 10 June, 1864. 

John N. Maffitt Commander 13 May, 1863. 

James Iredell VVaddell First Lieutenant 6 January, 1864. 

Captain Cooke commanded the ram "Albemarle" at the capture of 
Plymouth, 20 April, 1864, b}' General E. F. Hoke, for which victory 
General Hoke and himself, with the officers and men under their com- 
mand, were voted thanks by the Confederate Congress. General Hoke's 
commission as Major-General bears that date in recognition of his service. 

Lieutenant James Iredell Waddell, as commander of the "Shenan- 
doah," was the last to bear the Confederate flag, not having heard of the 
fall of the Confederacy till August, 1865, when he was in mid Pacific. 

Commander J. N. Maffitt' s services were also conspicuous and are well 

Walter Clark. 

Raleigh, N. C., 

26 April, 1901. 



By major, a. GORDON. 




Staff of Adjutant-General of North Carolina. 

The Legislature met May 1, 1861, and authorized Governor 
Ellis to raise ten regiments of State Troops for the war before 
the State Convention met. An Adjutant-General and other 
staff officers were authorized for these troops. Major James G. 
Martin, on his arrival at Raleigh, after his resignation from the 
United States Army, was appointed by the Governor Adjutant- 
General of this corps. Most of the officers of these regiments 
were appointed by the Governor prior to this, and several of 
them were well advanced in recruiting. The first six regiments 
were put in camp and were soon armed, drilled and equipped, 
and sent to Virginia. The Fifth and Sixth participated in the 
first fight at Manassas. The Seventh and Eighth were not ready 
for some time afterwards. When fully recruited and equipped 
the Seventh was sent to New Bern, N. C, and the Eighth to 
Roanoke Island. The Ninth (First Cavalry) was camped at 
Warrenton and everything done to equip it for service as fast as 
circumstances would permit. There was considerable trouble in 
getting this regiment ready for service. Horses were purchased 
in Kentucky, and after getting the horses neither the State nor 

4 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Confederate States could furnish saddles and sabres. An agent 
of the State was dispatched to New Orleans to purchase saddles 
to make up the number wanted ; this done, there still remained a 
deficiency in sabres, which could not be purchased. The Second 
Cavalry, formerly Spruill's Legion, was camped at Kittrell 
Springs, both of these regiments having about sabres enough to 
do for one. In this condition of affairs the Governor and Gen- 
eral Martin appealed to the officers of the Second Cavalry to give 
up enough of their sabres to equip the First Cavalry, which they 
did with some reluctance, and with the assurance of the Adju- 
tant-General that the State would do everything in its' power to 
equip the Second Cavalry as soon as possible. The First Cav- 
alry was soon after this ordered to Virginia. Every effort was 
made to get the Second ready for service, which was done late in 
the fall of the year, and it was then> ordered to New Bern, N. C. 
The Tenth Regiment State Troops was artillery. Five com- 
panies of this regiment were light batteries — Eamseur's, Reilly's, 
Brem's, Moore's and Sutherland's : the first two were sent to 
Virginia, the other three remained in the State till later. During 
the first year of the war the other companies were assigned to 
duty in the forts below Wilmington. These regiments were all 
transferred to the Confedei-ate States, and the State had very little 
to do with them from that on, except to furnish clothing to the 
men and horses to the cavalry regiments and light batteries.. 
The Adjutant-General's office of North Carolina was practically 
done with them on their transfer to the Confederate States. 

Now, let ns look at the volunteers and see what had been done 
in that line. Colonel John F. Hoke was Adjutant-General 
under the old laws of the State, and it was through his office 
that the volunteers were organized. The First Volunteers were 
organized ahead of any other regiment in the State; the Second, 
Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh soon followed. The 
first six were sent to Virgina, the Seventh to Hatteras. The 
Eighth, Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth, Thirteenth and Fourteenth 
Volunteers were organized between the 15th of June and 18th 
of July, 1861. All of these regiments, when organized, armed 

Organization of Troops. 5 

and equipped, were transferred to the Confederate States. Colo- 
nel John F. Hoke was elected Colonel of the Thirteenth Vol- 
unteers, and he resigned the office of Adjutant- General. The 
Governor ordered General Martin to take charge of both offices, 
that of the State Troops and Volunteers, until the Legislature 
met, when that body elected General Martin Adjutaut-Geueral 
of the State, and conferred upon him all the military power 
of the State, subject to the orders of the Governor. It con- 
solidated under him the Adjutant-General, Quartermaster-Gen- 
eral, Commissary, Ordnance and Pay Departments. 

The double sets of Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, etc.. State Troops, and 1, 
2, 3,. 4, etc.,Volunteers created some confusion, especially at Rich- 
mond, where they were unable to keep up the distinction. This 
led to an understanding between the two offices that the State 
Troops should retain the nun^bers 1 to 10, and the First Volun- 
teers to be numbered Eleventh Regiment North Carolina Troops 
(First Volunteers), etc. This caused some little dissatisfaction 
at first among the volunteers, but it soon passed away. There 
was some irregularity about the election of field officers of the 
Ninth Volunteers, and the Governor withheld the commissions. 
Into this vacant number was placed Spruill's Regiment, the 
Nineteenth North Carolina Troops, Second Cavalry. 

The next regiment organized was the Twenty-fifth at Ashe- 
viile on the 15th of August, the Twenty-sixth at Raleigh on the 
27th of the same mopth, and the Twenty-seventh soon followed. 
Most of the companies of this regiment were intended originally 
for the Ninth Volunteers. The Twenty-eighth Regiment was 
organized at High Point, September 21st. We are now in Sep- 
tember, 1861, with twenty-eight regiments organized and twelve 
or thirteen more in sight at the Adjutant-General's office, and as 
yet neither the Convention nor Legislature had made any pro- 
vision for clothing the troops; and if it was expected that the 
Confederate Government would furnish clothing, it was getting 
very plain that the troops would suffer before the winter was 
over. In this state of affairs the Legislature directed General 
Martin, late in the month of September, to provide winter cloth- 

6 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

ing, shoes, etc., for the North Carolina Troops. The time was 
very short, and it was no small task, and he went about it with 
his usual energy. He organized a clothing manufactory in Ral- 
eigh, under Captain Garrett, an efficient officer in that line of 
business ; every mill in the State was made to furnish every 
yard of cloth possible, and, in addition, Captain A. Myers 
was sent through North Carolina, South Carolina, and as far as 
Savannah, Ga., purchasing everything that could be made avail- 
able for clothing the troops. In addition to what the State fur- 
nished on such short notice the ladies of North Carolina, God bless 
them, nobly came to the assistance and furnished blankets, quilts, 
etc. Many carpets were torn up, lined with cotton, and rqade 
into quilts; by the combined efforts of the ladies and State 
officers the troops of North Carolina were clothed during the 
first winter of the war, if not exactly according to military regu- 
lation, in such a manner as to prevent much suffering; and after 
this winter the State was in better condition to supply the wants 
of her troops. Mention will be made of this subject hereafter, 
when we come to the fall of 1862. 

We will now take up the organization of the troops. Next 
comes the Twenty-ninth at Asheville, September 24th; the Thir- 
tieth, October 7th, at Weldon; the Thirty-first soon followed at 
Haleigh, and before it was well armed was sent to Roanoke 
Island. From a combination of circumstances, which could not 
be overcome at the time, this regiment was the worst armed that 
the State sent to the front. The State did not have the arms to 
furnish, and the Confederate States declined to furnish any more 
arms to twelve-months volunteers. Great trouble was experi- 
enced in furnishing arms from this time till late in the spring of 
1862. The Thirty-second was organized with six companies of 
North Carolina infantry, that went to Norfolk, Va., without the 
formality of going through the State offices. Additional com- 
panies were added by the State to make up the regiment. The 
Thirty-third was composed of companies enlisted for the war. 
Some of them were intended for the first ten regiments of State 
Troops, and being slow in recruiting, were left out; but enough 

Organization op Troops. 7 

were added to make a full regiment. The Goveruor appointed 
the field officers for this regiment. When armed and equipped 
it was ordered to Newbern. The Thirty-fourth was organized, 
as far as my memory serves, at High Point, October 26th, and 
when ready for service was sent to Virginia. The Thirty-fifth 
was organized near Raleigh, November 8th, and in January was 
sent to New Bern. The Thirty-sixth was made up of artillery 
companies. Serving in the forts below Wilmington, they were 
all in service several months before being organized into a regi- 
ment. The Thirty-seventh was organized at High Point, No- 
vember 20th. When the officers recruiting companies for this regi- 
ment tendered them to the State they were told that arms could 
not be furnished by the State. They then proposed to come to 
camp with their private rifles, and, if necessary, go to the field with 
them. They brought them tp camp. When they were supplied 
with better arms I am unable to state. The Thirty-eighth was 
organized at Raleigh, January 17, 1862. When ready it was 
sent to Virginia. 

The Thirty-ninth was organized at Asheville, and when armed 
and equipped went across the mountains to Tennessee (Decem- 
ber 1, 1863). The Fortieth was heavy artillery, and thecompa-, 
nies forming this regiment were on duty in the forts below Wil- 
mington several months before its organization as a regiment 
(September, 1862). The Forty-first was a cavalry regiment, and 
the companies put in this regiment were also on duty many 
months before a regimental organization. This was the last of 
the twelve-months volunteers. The dates given in Moore's 
" Roster " of the commissions of the field officers of the Thirty- 
ninth, Fortieth and Forty-first are not correct. These regiments 
were organized soon after the Thirty-eighth, which is given cor- 
rectly, and before the Forty-second, which took place April 22, 
1862. The State had in January, 1862, forty-one regiments 
armed and equipped and transferred to the Confederate States 
Army; twelve of these for the war, one for six months, twen- 
ty-eight for twelve months, and, in addition, several battalions 
and independent companies. The above is what was accom- 

8 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

plished between the passage of the ordinance of secession and 
the middle of January, 1862. The Forty-second, although 
mentioned above, belongs to the troops raised in the spring of 
1862, and will be mentioned hereafter with them. 

The foregoing narrative is well known to all those who have 
kept up with the military history of the State. We will now 
take up matters not so well known — official business between 
the Executive office and the Adjutant-General's office; also mat- 
ters relating to the defense; all of which are so blended to- 
gether that the history of the one cannot be given without the 
other. This is more particularly the case, as the Adjutant-General 
of North CaroHua was for several months in command of the 
defenses of the State, while Adjutant-General also. 

The State was invaded by a large military force under Gen- 
eral Buruside, who captured Roanoke Island on the 8th of Feb- 
ruary, 1862. It was very plain to military men that the object 
of the Buruside expedition was the capture of New Bern, Golds- 
boro and Raleigh, which it was expected to do, while McClel- 
lan's army was to do the same at Richmond, Va. Both armies 
expected to move at the same time. The Adjutant-General of 
North Carolina was very much concerned about the safety of 
New Bern, N. C. He sent an officer of his staff to look at the 
forts and find out the number of troops available for the defense. 
That officer was shown the defenses by Major Robert F. Hoke, 
then of the Thirty-third, serving at New Bern, afterwards Major- 
General. After inspecting the forts, etc.. Major Hoke remarked 
that unless greater energy was displayed in the near future than 
in. the past the place could not be successfully defended, all of 
which was plainly to be seen. This state of affairs was reported 
to the Adjutant-General. He in turn reported the matter to the 
Governor. The Legislature, at the fall session of 1861, directed 
the Adjutant-General to reorganize the militia of the State, and 
appointed him Major-General of the same when called into ser- 
vice. General Martin believed that the Legislature expected 
something more than a paper organization of the militia, and he 
requested the Governor to call out ten thousand State militia to 

Organization of Troops. 9 

help defend New Bern. This the Governor declined to do, on the 
ground that he expected the Confederate Government to defend 
the place. Whether he wrote to the Government or not for 
re-inforcements cannot be stated positively, but the impression in 
the Adjutant-General's office was that he did. No re-inforce- 
ments were sent, and on the 14th of March, 1862, New Bern fell 
into the hands of Burnside. On the following day General 
Martin went to Kinston to confer with General Branch, to find 
out the actual condition of his army, and see if the State could 
render any assistance. That day the writer went to the Govern- 
or's office, the Adjutant-General doing this daily, to receive the 
Governor's orders, if any. While there the defenseless condition 
of the State was discussed by ex-Governor Bragg, who was pres- 
ent, and at this time aide to Governor Claris. Governor Bragg 
was in favor of calling out the militia, and somewhat urged the 
Governor to do so. This Governor Clark declined to do, but 
authorized the Adjutant-General's office to write to the militia 
captains of the State "to have one-third of their command in 
readiness." This order was somewhat changed in the Adjutant- 
General's office — made more effective. The captains were ordered 
to detail (draft was probably the word used) one-third of their 
men; the men so drafted, or any others, were given permission to 
volunteer for the war. This order struck a wave of patriotism 
that was floating over the State from east to west, which was 
almost dormant for some months on account of the Government 
refusing to furnish arms to twelve-months volunteers. Promi- 
nent men in every county of the State vied with each other in 
raising troops, and many of those not actually going to the field 
were as busy helping as those going. Instead of getting one- 
third, the writer believes that fully two-thirds of those liable to 
service volunteered under this call. In all, twenty-eight regiments 
and several battalions promptly volunteered. The Adjutant- 
General's office was daily crowded by men offering companies 
for service. The Eleventh Eegiment (Bethel) was reorganized 
at High Point, April 18th; the Forty-second at Salisbury, April 
22d, and at Camp Mangum, near Raleigh, were organized the 

10 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Forty-third, Forty-fourth, Forty-fifth, Forty-sixth, Forty-sev- 
enth, Forty-eighth, Forty-ninth, Fiftieth, Fifty-second, Fifty- 
third, Fifty-fourth and Fifty-fifth, all between the 21st of April 
and 19th of May. The Fifty-first was recruited in the Cape Fear 
district and organized at Wilmington. The State had now in 
a very short time fifteen splendid regiments organized and ready 
for service, except the arms, which will be mentioned later. All 
the military departments of the State were taxed to the utmost to 
clothe, feed and equip this large number of troops who so promptly 
came to the defense of the State, In addition to those mentioned 
above twelve or thirteen more regiments were in sight at the 
Adjutant-General's office, to be taken care of when fully recruited. 
On or about the 15th day of May, 1862, General Martin was 
surprised by receiving a letter from General R. E. Lee and a 
Brigadier-General's commission in the Confederate States Army, 
and informing him that he was expected to take command at 
Kinston on or about the first of June, relieving General Rob- 
ert Ransom. This commission at first General Martin declined, 
and wrote General Lee that he had a commission from the State 
of North Carolina, and as the troops to be commanded would 
be from the State, he would prefer to serve with the commission 
he had. To this General Lee replied that the Government did 
not wish to call him out under his State commission, and that 
every available man in North Carolina was to be moved to 
Virginia except four regiments, which he was to take from camp 
at Raleigh to Kinston, and that "he was expected to take com- 
mand during the emergency." These were the words used by 
the great chieftain. Under the circumstances he accepted, though 
not a very agreeable position to be in, the command of a large State, 
with only four or five available regiments, and an enemy esti- 
mated at upwards of twenty thousand in his front. On or about 
the night General Martin received his commission as Brio-adier- 
General the Governor of North Carolina received a communi- 
cation from the War Department of the Confederate States Army 
giving him in full the plan of the campaign to crush McClellan's 
army, and asking his co-operation with the North Carolina Troops 

Organization of Troops. 11 

in camp not yet turned over to the Confederate States. This was 
to reconcile him to the moving of all the troops then in the 
State to Virginia. The statement above, that the War Depart- 
ment would communicate the plans of one of the most famous 
battles of the world more than a month before a shot was fired 
might, without explanation, seem incredulous. The State of 
North Carolina had at this time fifteen regiments, each near a 
thousand strong, not yet turned over to the Confederate States. 
These troops were raised on the Governor's call for the defense 
of the State, as shown in this narrative, and he could have kept 
them for that service if so disposed. This was the only body 
of reserve troops in the Confederacy, at least no other State had 
anything approximating it, and it was very important for Gen- 
eral Lee to receive this re-inforcement, hence everything was made 
fully known to the Governor of North Carolina. In brief, the 
plan, as told me by my chief, was to concentrate everything that 
could be taken out of North Carolina and elsewhere on McClel- 
lan's army and crush it before Burnside could move from New 
Bern. It seemed to be understood that the 1st of July was the 
time fixed for the movement of Burnside's army ; this was 
given by the Confederate States War Department from 
Richmond. The Governor of North Carolina was informed 
that the defense of his State would be an easy problem after the 
defeat of McClellan's army, and would not be overlooked. The 
Governor and Adjutant-General of North Carolina went into 
the plan heart and soul, and did everything in their power to 
make it a success; they, and they alone, knowing what the Con- 
federate Government and'General Lee expected North Carolina 
and them to do. 

About this time the State received a shipment of arms from 
England, landed at Wilmington, exact number not recollected 
now, probably two thousand. They were given, to the troops 
now waiting for them. The Confederate Government now 
came to the assistance of the State in arming the troops 
at Camp Mangum, and before the 1st of June every one 
of them was armed and ready for service. The troops serving 

12 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

in the State were quietly and gradually withdrawn and sent to 
Virginia. General Holmes, who was in command, moved to 
Petersburg. Branch's Brigade was withdrawn and Daniel's 
Brigade also; the latter had a brigade, though not yet a commis- 
sioned brigadier. Ransom's command moved on the 2d of June 
to Eichmond, and on that date General Martin took command 
at Kinston. His brigade consisted of the Seventeenth, Forty- 
fourth, Forty-seventh and Fifty-second. The Fiftieth was 
ordered to Plymouth and the Fifty-first was still at Wilming- 
ton. This left six regiments of infantry in the State. The Sec- 
ond Cavalry was on picket duty as close to New Bern as possible. 
The three artillery regiments, Tenth, Thirty-sixth and Fortieth, 
were on duty in the forts below Wilmington, except the light 
batteries of the Tenth, which were in Virginia ; this was the 
force in the State on the 2d of June, 1862. The Twenty-ninth 
and Thirty-ninth were in the Army of Tennessee; all the rest in 
Virginia. Everything-passed off quietly for two or three weeks — 
a calm before the desperate struggle. When the struggle com- 
menced at Richmond, General Lee was fearful that Burnside 
would find out the defenseless condition of North Carolina, and 
move forward. Every night he telegraphed to General Martin at 
Kinston, "Any movements of the enemy in your front to-day?" 
On the night of the sixth day's fighting at Richmond the War De- 
partment telegraphed to the Governor of North Carolina, "Any 
troops in your State that can be spared?" The reply was, "None 
but Martin's Brigade at Kinston; you can move it if wanted." It 
was ordered to Virginia that night and left early next morning, 
but the seven days' fighting was over before it got there, and it 
was ordered to camp near Drury's Bluff. The State had now 
left in it two regiments of infantry, the Fiftieth and Fifty-first, 
the last ordered from Wilmington to Kinston. One cavalry regi- 
ment and three artillery regiments, the Twenty-ninth and Thir- 
ty-ninth, as already stated, were in the Army of Tennessee, the 
other forty-seven regiments in Virginia — that was North Caro- 
lina's contribution to the spring campaign of 1862. And if the 
defeat of McClellan's army was not as complete as expected, it 

Organization of Troops. 13 

certainly, from the foregoing showing, was not the fault of North 
Carolina or North Carolinians. From the Governor down to 
the humblest private, all nobly did their duty. The Governor 
exposed his own Capital to save that of the Confederacy and a 
sister State; only one regiment of infantry, one of cavalry, two 
or three batteries of artillery between him and an army estimated 
about twenty thousand strong. The risk taken in North Caro- 
lina at this time was very great. After the battles at Richmond 
matters remained quiet for a few weeks, both in Virginia and 
North Carolina, and the i^djutant-General of the latter State, 
with his brigade, was camped near Drewry's Bluff. In a short 
time the enemy commenced raiding in North Carolina, and the 
Governor telegraphed to the War Department to send General 
Martin and his brigade back to North Carolina. General Lee 
ordered General Martin to take command of North Carolina, 
but would not let the brigade return. On showing him the con- 
dition of the State, he allowed one regiment to return, and directed 
General Martin to organize more troops for the defense of the 
State. General Martin returned to Raleigh, assumed his duties 
as Adjutant-General of the State, and also commanded the troops 
on duty. 

We will now glance at the organization of more regiments. 
The Fifty-sixth was organized at Camp Mangnm, July 31st; the 
Fifty-seventh, if memory serves right, was organized at Salis- 
bury ; the Fifty-eighth, Sixtieth, Sixty-second, Sixty-fourth 
and Sixty-fifth were organized west of the Blue Ridge, and when 
armed and equipped went to the Army of Tennessee. McDowell 
was the first Colonel of the Sixtieth, not Lieutenant- Colonel, as 
put down in Moore's " Roster." The Fifty-ninth and Sixty-third 
were cavalry regiments, and were raised and organized in the 
East. When ready for service, both of them went to Virginia. 
The Sixty-first was organized at Wilmington. All of these regi- 
ments volunteered for the defense of the State, as originally 
called for by the Governor in the Adjutant-General's order of 
March 6th or 7th; also the Sixty-sixth and Thomas' Legion. 
The Sixty-sixth was formed out of Nethercutt's and Wright's 

14 North Carolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

Battalions. Some of the companies of this regiment had been on 
duty since 1861, but the regiment was not organized till 1863. 
The next regiment is the Sixty-seventh, Whitford's. Captain 
Whitford had a company in the Tenth Regiment, which was 
raised in the East, and was probably on duty at New Bern when 
that place fell into the hands of the enemy. At all events, when 
he was in camp at Swift Creek, in June, 1862, he kept a com- 
plete system of picket duty all the way to New Bern, and some- 
times brought communications from there. These services were 
considered so valuable that his company was detached from the 
Tenth and another company put in its place, and he was authorized 
to raise additional companies, which he continued to do till he 
had a large regiment. It was principally recruited near the 
enemy's lines. 

Here the writer will branch off a little and state that the peo- 
ple of the East, under the trying circumstances in which they 
were placed, were loyal to the State and Confederate Govern- 
ments. Every person that could move from New Bern did so 
when it fell into the hands of the enemy. The young men and old 
men also from the surrounding country flocked to the nearest 
camps, hence the raising of the Sixty-seventh Eegiment. The 
Sixty-eighth was raised in the extreme eastern counties of the State 
under the same circumstances as the Sixty-seventh. The Sixty- 
eighth was not transferred to the Confederate States, but remained 
in the State service till the end of the war. Moore's "Roster" 
does not give the strength of this regiment. The writer was on 
duty in it for a short time in ] 864. It might safely be put down 
at one thousand then, perhaps more before the surrender. 

It was well known that there were many prominent men in 
the East opposed to the war. The so-called Governor Stanly, 
when in New Bern, tried to communicate with them, and proba- 
bly succeed in getting letters to some of them. He also made 
a trip up the Pamlico to see some of the prominent men there. 
This was reported by scouts at the time. He did see one or more 
prominent men of that section, but he got no aid or encourage- 
ment there. He was plainly told that there was no Union senti- 

Organization of Troops. 15 

ment in the State, and it is more than probable that the plain 
truths told him at there interview led him to resign and leave the 
State soon afterwards. The writer found out accidentally about 
this interview after the war was over. 

One prominent man of the East lost his life trying to serve 
the Confederacy in a diplomatic way. I allude to the Hon. 
James Bryan, of New Bern. In June, 1862, he applied to 
the Commanding-General for permission to go North by 
flag of truce; it was at a time when no flags were permitted, 
consequently Mr. Bryan's application was sent to the War 
Department. In a few days an answer was returned that 
President Davis wanted to see Mr. Bryan. He was informed of 
this, and promptly went to Richmond. He was requested by 
President Davis to go to Washington and sound the public men 
there upon what terms they would be willing to a separa- 
tion. This was all the writer learned of the mission. He went 
to Washington, remained there some time, and then returned 
to New Bern, which place he was not permitted to leave, and died 
there of -yellow fever. This is a case of which nothing was 
ever known in the State. There are some doubts in my mind 
as to his own sons knowing of the mission he had from the 

We will now get back to the Adjutant-General's work proper. 
The next regiment is the Sixty-ninth; this was originally Thomas' 
Legion, and had been on duty since 1862. Two battalions 
belonged to this organization ; both of them were detached in 
Virginia, and with the view of getting more efScient service, the 
legion organization was discontinued in the winter of 1864 and 
the regimental adopted. This regiment was raised in the West, 
and remained on duty there till the end. The next and last 
regiment of the line is what Moore puts down as the Seventy- 
fifth. This was the Seventh Confederate Cavalry, and was 
originally recruited by orders from the War Department. Two 
companies of this regiment were from Virginia, two from 
Georgia, six from North Carolina. 

The f ,d officers of this regiment were appointed by the 
War Department. At the request of General Martin the Hon. 

16 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

E. R. Bridgers, of the Confederate Congress, got a law passed 
through that body that the North Carolina Troops in the Sev- 
enth Confederate Cavalry should be detached with the view of 
organizing a full regiment of North Carolina Troops. The com- 
panies from Virginia and Georgia were very weak in men and 
horses, and as the regiment was on duty in North Carolina in 
the summer and fall of 1863, it was recruited so as to make it 
almost, if not altogether, a North Carolina regiment. Besides 
above, through the Conscript Bureau of the Confederacy, there 
was organized the Seventieth, Seventy-first and Seventy-sec- 
ond (Junior Reserves), who were nearly twelve months in 
service, and the Seventy-third and Seventy-fourth (Senior Re- 
serves), who rendered short tours of service. There were also a 
number of battalions, but the writer is not able to give much of 
a history of them. They seem to be pretty well accounted for in 
Moore's "Roster," except Henry's Battalion. This had six com- 
panies in it, and was probably five hundred strong. Lieutenant- 
Colonel Kennedy's Battalion was composed of Georgians and 
North Carolinians, as Moore states. Kennedy was a. native of 
North Carolina, moved to Georgia, raised some of his command 
in the State of his adoption, moved with them to North Caro- 
lina and raised more. These irregularities the Adjutant-Gen- 
eral's office tried to prevent, but sometimes they were in service 
before anything was known of the case. Some companies went 
to Virginia without reporting to the Adjutant- General's office. 
This, if memory serves right, was the case with the First Bat- 
talion, and perhaps others. 

We will now try to give a history of the clothing of this 
large army the State put in service. When the Legislature in 
1861, directed General Martin to furnish clothing for the North 
Carolina Troops, there were then only about thirty regiments in 
service. In less than a year that number was more than doubled 
and it became very plain to General Martin that the resources of 
the State were not adequate to the demands of the army. la 
August, 1862, he laid the matter before Governor Clark and 
asked permission to buy supplies abroad and a ship to transport 

■Okganization of Troops. 17 

them. The Governor's term of service being near an end, he 
declined to give any orders, and requested the matter to lie over 
till Governor Vance was inaugurated. Soon after Governor 
Vance's inauguration General Martin brought the matter to his 
attention. The Governor- took it under advisement for a few 
days. Soon his attention was called to the subject again, and he 
requested General Martin to come to the Executive ofBce that 
night and meet two or three prominent men, when the matter 
would be discussed on both sides. The Hon. B. F. Moore 
was the leader of those present. He took the ground that the 
Governor and Adjutant-General had no authority by law to pur- 
chase a ship, and that they would both be liable to impeachment 
if they did so. General Martin took the ground that the laws 
of North Carolina made it his duty to furnish clothing to the 
troops, and voted funds to do this; that the resources of the State 
were not equal to the demand ; that transport ships were used in 
all modern armies, and that they were as necessary as wagons, 
mules, etc., of which the law made no mention. The Gov- 
ernor reserved his decision that night, but when asked for 
it the next day he authorized General Martin to buy the ship 
and clothing for the troops, and signed sufficient bonds for this 
purpose, which were afterwards placed in the hands of the State 
agent sent abroad. The next thing for the Adjutant-General to 
do was to get a man of ability and responsibility to be sent as 
agent to England. The Governor made no suggestions on this 
point. On the recommendation of Major Hogg, Mr. White, of 
Warrenton, was selected as State agent to go abroad to purchase 
the ship and supplies, and Colonel Thomas Crossan was sent to 
command the ship, and well did they perform this and every other 
duty intrusted to them by tlie State. In due time the steamer 
"Lord Clyde" was purchased, afterwards named "Ad- Vance," 
and arrived safely in Wilmington with supplies for the troops. 
Governor Vance got a great deal of credit for this, while General 
Martin, who was the real author of it, got practically none. From 
this time forward it is certain that the North Carolina Troops 
were better clothed than those of any other State. In March, 

18 North Caeolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

1863, the Legislature declared the office of Adjutant-General 
vacant for the reason that General Martin had accepted a commis- 
sion from the Confederate States. He never drew any salary 
from the government for the services he rendered while Adju- 
tant-General of North Carolina. After this he resumed com- 
mand of a brigade, and the duties of the office were next per- 
formed by General D. G. Fowle for a few months. The troops 
of the State were practically organized before General Martin 
left the office. The only regiments that were raised afterwards 
were the Sixty-seventh and Sixty-eighth, and perhaps two or 
three battalions besides the Junior and Senior Reserves. 

In March, 1863, the writer's connection with the Adjutant- 
General's office ceased, and he is not able to give any detailed 
history of what took place afterwards. Major Graham, who 
was assistant to General Gatlin, can su|)ply this part of the nar- 
rative. There is nothing said here of the troops who took the 
forts on the coast and the Fayetteville Arsenal early in 1861. 
Major Graham Daves, who was Private Secretary to Governor 
Ellis, could furnish this. No man in the State is more able or 
better qualified to do it. The three reports would give as com- 
plete a history as can be secured at this late date. 

The three war Governors of the State, Ellis, Clark and Vance, 
are dead. The four war Adjutant-Generals are also dead, Hoke, 
Martin, Fowle and Gatlin, and with them a great deal of the 
war history of the State is lost, but the secretaries of the former 
and assistants of the latter are still living, and enough can yet 
be collected to make a I'espectable showing. Governor Vance is 
known to history as the War Governor of the State. The rec- 
ords show that fifteen regiments were organized before Governor 
Ellis' death, and there were at least fifteen more in active state 
of recruiting. All the other regiments of the North Carolina 
Troops were organized during Governor Clark's term, with the 
exception of the Sixty-seventh and Sixty-eighth and some two 
or three battalions — exclusive of Reserves organized under the 
Conscript Bureau. 

It was Governor Vance that authorized the purchase of the 
supplies from abroad and a ship to transport them. This act 

Organization of Troops. 19 

endeared him to the people of the State more than any other act of 
his life, perhaps more than all the others combined, numerous 
and creditable as they were. 

Something might be expected here as to the probable .number 
of troops sent to the field. The writer, stating facts as known 
to him,- does not like to go into the realms of conjecture. Major 
Moore has devoted a great deal of time and attention to the 
matter and, although his work is unfortunately not complete, it 
is the best there is. He furnishes the names for several regi- 
ments that had from fifteen to eighteen hundred men. It is 
almost certain, from what is known of the rest of the regiments, 
that if a correct list could be had the whole line of seventy-three 
regiments would average sixteen hundred each ; the battalions, 
eight thousand, total. This would give a total of nearly one 
hundred and twenty-five thousand men actually in the field dur- 
ing the war. Add to this the Senior Reserves, etc., and there is an 
aggregate of one hundred and twenty-seven thousand men, a very 
moderate estimate, probably. The exact number will never be 
known unless an effort is made in the near future to get the 
names of those missing before their comrades are dead. 

A few words in regard to the records in the Adjutant-Gen- 
eral's office. When troops were mustered into service the origi- 
nal muster-rolls were deposited in the Adjutant-General's office. 
Soon after the first troops were transferred to the Confederate 
States the Adjutant-General requested them to send copies of 
their muster-rolls to Raleigh. Several of the commanding offi- 
cers objected, as involving too much clerical work in time of war. 
The matter was dropped by the Adjutant-General, as he had no 
power to enforce this request. He, however, requested a copy 
of the monthly regimental returns, which most of the command- 
ing officers sent. 

Here it may be proper to say something in regard to the cloth- 
ing furnished by the State. All the clothing was manufactured 
by the State and then turned over to the Confederate Quarter- 
master at Raleigh, his receipts taken for the same and the issues 
made by him. So hard pressed was the Confederacy that on one 

20 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

or two occasions during the writer's service in Raleigh it had to 
draw on this depot for the troops of other States. The State 
presented claims to the Confederate States for the clothing fur- 
nished, which were paid, if there were any funds on hand to pay 

The Convention appointed a Board of Auditors at Raleigh to 
audit the war accounts of the State. The board consisted of the 
Hons. B. F. Moore, P. H. Winston and S. F. Phillips, who 
audited all the accounts of the diiferent war bureaus of the State. 
During General Martin's term of office they never found a mis- 
take in a single voucher or disbursement, as everything was 
strictly according to law, something extraordinary in time of war. 
This they were at all times ready to admit, although not very 
ardent admirers of the military policy of the State. 

It is conceded by all that the State of North Carolina put 
more troops in the field during the war than any other Southern 
State. We can go further, and claim that these troops were bet- 
ter armed and equipped before leaving the State, and certainly 
better clothed during the entire war, than those of any other 
State. The State of North Carolina was the only one thait fur- 
nished clothing for its troops during the entire war. It was the 
only State that engaged in direct trade with England, purchas- 
ing its supplies and transporting them with its own ship. In 
this respect it was not only ahead of its sister States, but also of 
the Quartermaster's Department Confederate States Army, for 
that department never owned a transport ship during the whole 
of its four years' existence, although its credit abroad was ample 
for years. It is probably true that it got some supplies through 
the blockade, by the " Sumter " and other vessels, before they were 
turned into armed cruisers, but it is here asserted, without fear 
of successful contradiction, that the Quartermaster's Department 
Confederate States Army never owned or purchased a transport 
ship during the war. And, as a matter of history, it was in the 
fall of 1863 before any regulations were adopted by the Con- 
federate States in regard to getting supplies by blockade-runners. 
An order was issued then requiring all vessels to take out and in 

Organization of Troops. 21 

one-third of their cargoes for the Confederate States. This was 
one year after North Carolina was running the blockade in full 
blast with its own steamer. That ought to be sufficient proof of 
our claims. 

Now, if our claims are correct that the State furnished more 
troops, and that they were better equipped and clothed than those 
of our sister States, there must be some reason for this. All of 
these things could not happen by accident. In the opinion of 
the writer there were three reasons : 

1st. When the Legislature elected General Martin Adjutant- 
General of the State it conferred ample power on him and voted 
him sufficient money. He had power and money combined, 
both very essential in war. 

2d. General Martin brought to the discharge of this office a 
great deal of energy and mature judgment, which a long expe- 
rience in the line and staff of the United States Army gave him, 
and he went into it heart and soul, expecting to win, and so well 
did he lay the foundations of the business at Raleigh that none 
of his successors, so far as known, made the slightest change in 
the methods adopted by him. 

Third and last reason. The intense loyalty of the people of 
the State made the matter much easier for the success of the 
cause desired. There was no staying inside the enemy's lines in 
North Carolina. These were the causes of North Carolina's 
superior military establishment. 

Mention has been made here of the loyalty of the people of 
the East; it would not be just to the West if omitted. The 
great majority of the people of the West were equally as loyal 
and true as their brethren of the East. No taint of disloyalty 
was attached to any prominent man in the West: this the writer 
knows well, as he was on service there the last eight months of 
the war. It is, however, true that there was a streak of disloy- 
alty in a few of the counties bordering on East Tennessee. This 
was not occasioned so much by Unionism as a dislike to be con- 
scripted into the army. Several men from that section went across 
the lines to Tennessee and joined the notorious Kirk's command. 

22 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Three or four companies of North Carolinians were in that com- 
mand, which gave a great deal of trouble during the last months 
of the war, and in one of these raids killed the Hon. W. W. 
Avery, of Burke, while he was at the head of a band of citizens 
pursuing the raiders. 

The War Department, at the suggestion of General Martin, 
who commanded this district at the close of the war, suspended 
the conscript law, and there were no more runaways. Major 
A. C. Avery was also authorized to raise a regiment for local ser- 
vice. Some progress was made in recruiting several companies 
for this regiment, but the Major was captured during Stoneman's 
raid. The regiment was never organized, and, as far as known, 
the Major did not get his colonel's commission. This was the 
last effort made to raise troops in the State before the war closed. 

The writer has now given all the information that memory 
can furnish at this late date; but one secret remains, and that has 
been sealed in his breast since July, 1861, and here it is: 

On the day after the battle of the first Manassas Governor 
Clark got a telegram from the War Department informing him 
that there was not powder enough in the Confederacy for another 
day's fight, and requesting him to put nitre agents in the field. 
This state of affairs was known only to five men in North Caro- 
lina, Governor Clark, Colonel Barringer (his aide). General Mar- 
tin, Mr. Pulaski Cowper, the Governor's Secretary, and the writer. 
Here, as elsewhere, the Adjutant-General's office of North Caro- 
lina promptly came to the rescue and appointed several nitre 
agents throughout the State. Their names cannot be given at 
this late date or any detailed history of their operations, though 
they were considerable, and continued until the end of the war. 
It was at the request of the Adjutant-General's office of North 
Carolina that Colonel Gorgas, Chief of Ordnance Confederate 
States Army, took possession of the Salisbury Machine Shop, which 
was turned into an arsenal, and also the Cranberry Iron Works 
both of which were so serviceable to the Confederacy. It is prob- 
able that mistakes were made of omission and commission, but who 
could have guided such a revolution without making them? If 


Quarter Master General. 

Okganization of Troops. 23 

we consider the condition of the State and the Confederacy, both 
entering the war without a supply of arms and only one day's 
supply of powder, as stated above, it is a wonder to those who 
topk an active part in the war that so much was accomplished 
with such slender means to begin with, and it must remain a 
wonder to future generations also. Such was the condition of 
affairs at Raleigh in the spring of 1862 that spears had to be 
manufactured and put in the hands of several of the new regi- 
ments coming to Camp Mangum. No guns of any kind or pat- 
tern could be obtained. No doubt some of these spear-heads are 
lying around Camp Mangum yet, if not eaten up by rust. 

I have now complied with the request made of me, and regret 
very much that this history is so meagre, particularly in regard 
to the organization of the troops, but I have not a scrap of mili- 
tary history of any kind except Moore's " Roster," and cannot give 
anything like a full history. It is the best I can do from 

Following this will be given a history of the operations of the 
Quartermaster, Commissary, Ordnance and Pay Departments of 
the State. 


The Quartermaster's Department of the State of North Caro- 
lina at the commencement of the war was under the direction of 
Colonel L. O'B. Branch, Quartermaster-General, Lieutenant- 
Colonel Samuel J. Person, Majors A. M. Lewis, T. B. Venable, 
Wm. S. Ashe and John W. Cameron, Captains Abraham My- 
ers Robert Rankin and Moses A. Bledsoe. 

There are very few records of the early operations of the 
department available for this report; in fact, it seems few. have 
been published. This is probably owing to Colonel Branch's 
resignation from the department to accept command of the 

24 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Thirty-third Regiment North Carolina Troops during the sum- 
mer of 1861; but that it was ably and well managed, as was every- 
thing else that Colonel Branch and the officers associated with 
him had anything to do with, is well known to the writer ajid 
those who had any business transactions with the department. 
The rapid and satisfactory equipment of the troops hurriedly 
called into service fully attest this. Most of the officers of the 
department followed the example of their chief and took service 
in other positions. 

On the 20th of September, 1861, the department was reorgan- 
ized according to the law passed on that date, and General James 
G. Martin was elected chief of all the war departments of the 
State. Major John Devereux was appointed Chief Quarter- 
master, which position he kept from that date to the end of the 
war. It was under his immediate direction and supervision that the 
operations of the department were so ably conducted during the 
rest of the war. He was assisted by Captain Moses A. Bledsoe, 
in charge of transportation and other duties; by Captain Abra- 
ham Myers, in purchasing supplies, and Captain I. W. Garrett, 
the latter in charge of the clothing manufactured by the State. 
After Captain Garrett's resignation Major Dowd was put in 
charge of that business. In addition to the above there were 
two State agents, Captain W. H. Oliver in the eastern and Captain 
•James Sloan in the central part of the State. The names of 
these agents do not appear on the " North Carolina Roster," as they 
were not staff officers, but both of them performed valuable 
services, and should not be lost sight of here. By the law of 
September 20th the Governor was required to furnish clothing 
to the North Carolina Troops in the field, then about thirty 
thousand men. The officers of the department and the resources 
of the State were taxed to the utmost to accomplish this before 
severe weather, as no preparations had been made for it by the 
State and no law on the subject prior to September 20th, probably 
supposing that the Confederate States would supply the troops 
after they were transferred, but it was getting plainer every day 
that the Government was not able to do it. The unpleasant 

Organization op Troops. 25 

truth must be stated that the Government did not realize what 
was ahead of it, and lacked energy to supply the troops from 
the beginning. In confirmation of this statement the views 
of the Hon. Judah P. Benjamin, Secretary of War, will be 
given under the head of Ordnance Department. Everything 
that could be made available in the State for clothing the troops 
was purchased, and the factories cheerfully furnished every yard 
of cloth they could. Major Devereux and his assistants were 
quite busy collecting and Captain Garrett equally so manufac- 
turing. As fast as the articles were received every effort was 
made by all the officers of the department to furnish the troops 
with clothing before the severe weather of winter set in. With 
the large and valuable help given by the ladies of the State, 
who furnished blankets, quilts and carpets to be cut up into the 
size of small quilts and lined, and many other articles, the troops 
of North Carolina were clothed during the first winter of the 
war in such manner as to prevent much suffering. 

In the spring and early summer of 1862 the department was 
again severely tried to furnish supplies to the large number of 
troops who volunteered for the defense, of the State, but with 
good management and energy it provided for them all, about 
twenty-five new regiments and several battalions, putting at that 
date the number of regiments up to sixty-five. In the fall of 
1862 it was getting plain that the resources of the State were 
not adequate to the demands of such a large army, especially as 
the Confederate Government was also drawing supplies from the 
State, although the Quartermaster-General of the Confederate 
States Army agreed to withdraw his agents and let the State 
purchase everything and turn over to the Confederate States 
what was not needed for the North Carolina Troops. This 
agreement was not kept. It is probable that the necessities of 
the Quartermaster's Department compelled it to break the agree- 
ment — we will be charitable on this point. 

General Martin, in his report to the Governor in November, 
1862, says: "Some articles are very difficult to be obtained at 
any price', especially blankets and shoes. In regard to shoes. 

26 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

there are materials enough in the State to supply all that are 
required for our own troops and citizens at reasonable prices, 
provided the agents of the Confederate States do not come into 
competition with us and speculators can be prevented from tak- 
ing them out of the State." 

Governor Vance, in his message to the Legislature in Novem- 
ber, 1862, says in regard to clothing: "I beg to call your atten- 
tion to the great and almost insurmountable difficulties encoun- 
tered by the Quartermaster's Department in providing clothing, 
shoes and blankets for our troops. During the administration 
of my predecessor an arrangement was entered into, according 
to a resolution of the General Assembly, with the Quartermas- 
ter's Department Confederate States Army, by which North 
Carolina was to receive commutation for clothing her troops, and 
clothe and shoe them herself. And on our agreeing to sell to 
the Confederate States all the surplus supplies that could be pro- 
cured in the State, they agreed to withdraw their agents from 
our markets and leave the State the whole field without com- 
petition. This would have enabled the State to clothe and shoe 
her troops comfortably, and it could have furnished to the Confed- 
erate States all that was to be had anyhow at reasonable rates; 
but it was immediately violated. The country was soon and is 
still swarming with agents of the Confederate States, stripping 
bare our markets and putting enormous prices upon our agents. 
This is especially the case in regard to shoes and leather. The 
consequence has been our troops could not get half supplies from 
home and nothing at all from the Confederate Government be- 
cause of our agreement to furnish them ourselves." 

Notwithstanding the difficulties encountered, as above stated, 
the operations of the Quartermaster's Department for the twelve 
months commencing October 1, 1861, and ending September 30, 
1862, were very large and, all things considered, very satis- 

General Martin, in his report to the Governor, says the dis- 
bursements for the year are as follows (we omit cents): 

Organization or Troops. 27 

Clothing, .... 


Camp and garrison equipage, 


Mules, wagons and harness, 




Horses for two regiments of cavalry, 




Miscellaneous, consisting of trans- 

portation, buildings, hospital ex- 

penses, etc., .... 


Pay of troops. 


Bounty, ..... 



Showing a total for the department for the year of over four 
and a half million dollars. 

We will now copy a statement of the issues of clothing, camp 
and garrison equipage issued by the Quartermaster's Depart- 
ment at Raleigh, N. C, to North Carolina Troops during the 
fiscal year ending September 30, 1862: 

"Hats 8,918, caps 61,949, coats 27,380, jackets 48,093, over- 
coats 22,598, pants 85,779, drawers 85,597, shirts 110,723, pairs 
socks 47,155, blankets 28,185, pairs shoes 75,809, pouches 927,. 
guard-caps 627, knapsacks 33,471, canteens 25,598, canteen- 
straps 9,676, haversacks 30,264, camp kettles 3,156, mess pans 
6,703, spiders 597, pots and ovens 1,227, oven lids 161, hatchets 
784, axes 1,919, axe handles 1,739, picks 938, pick handles 933, 
tents 4,282, officers' tents 531, hospital tents 287, tent flies 452, 
pounds nails 6,012, spades and shovels 1,583, drums 215, fifes 
82, flags 22, flag-staffs 11, pounds castings 1,734, pairs boots 32, 
knapsacks 935, tin cups 340, plates 220, buckets 15, yards wool 
cloth, 11,810, yards cotton cloth 2,178, dozen buttons 14,023, 
pounds thread 89, yards carpeting 521, frying-pans 25, blank 
books 2, bed sacks 220, stoves 3, coffee-pots 21, saws 5, augers 
2 broom 1, cap-covers 418, oil-cloth caps 45, yards oil-cloth 20, 

28 NoETH Cakolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

letters 6,000, figures 4,000, mattresses 9, camp-stools 42, buckets 
38, bedsteads 112." 

All of these articles were manufactured in the State, and showed 
plainly that the department was quite busy and energetic. It is 
here due to the memory of three able, faithful and efficient offi- 
cers, who had charge of the business under their chief, to state 
that most of the purchases and payments for these supplies were 
made by Major John Devereux, the articles of clothing were 
manufactured by Captain Garrett, except shoes, which were made 
in different establishments and issued to the troops by Major 

This brings us down to the operations of the department in 
getting supplies through the blockade. To General Martin be- 
longs the credit of engaging in this business. He tried to get 
Governor Clark's consent to it, but on account of his official 
term expiring soon he left the matter to his successor. Soon 
after Governor Vance's inauguration General Martin explained 
to him everything about the supply of clothing, etc., and asked 
his approval of the scheme to purchase a ship in England and 
get supplies from there. The Governor took the matter under 
advisement. His attention was called to the matter again a few 
days later. On that occasion he asked General Martin to call 
at the Executive office that night and he would call in two or 
three lawyers, as he would like to have both sides of the question 
discussed. The meeting that night was quite warm, that is, 
the discussion of the law between the Hon. B. F. Moore, the 
spokesman of those present, on one side, and General Martin on 
the other; the law and everything connected with the mili- 
tary supplies being discussed. The Hon. B. F. Moore took 
strong grounds against the State entering the blockade business, 
and finally told Governor Vance and General Martin that if 
they engaged in the business they would both be liable to im- 
peachment. General Martin took the ground that the laws of 
the State made it his duty to supply clothing to the troops in the 
field; that a large sum of money was appropriated for the pur- 

Organiza.I'ion of Troops. 29 

pose without any restriction as to where purchases were to be made; 
that the supplies of the State were not adequate; that the Con- 
federate States were paying the State large sums of money for 
clothing; that the Confederate notes could be turned into cot- 
ton and with cotton bonds buy the ship and clothing without 
any additional expense to the State, the cotton bonds and cot- 
ton itself used simply as bills of exchange, where neither the 
State notes nor Confederate currency would be available. As to 
the purchase of a ship, General Martin took the ground that he 
had as much right to do that as to purchase many other articles 
not mentioned in the law, it being well known that transport ships 
are a part of the equipment of all modern armies. The Governor 
reserved his decision that night, but next morning, when called 
upon for it, decided to support General Martin in his effort to 
sustain the army. The Governor at no time expressed any 
opinion of the law until his final approval came, although he 
had called in able and influentiallawyers to hear their opinions. 
The facts of the case are that the law did not authorize or prohibit 
blockade-running. The manner of getting the clothing was left 
to the discretion of the Quartermaster-General, subject to the 
approval of the Governor. General Martin did not want to 
violate the law — no man was more particular in that respect — 
and if it had looked like a violation Governor Vance would 
not have approved it. This was the only law on which 
there was any difference of opinion during the war. Governor 
Vance approved General Martin's construction of it, the Legis- 
lature approved the Governor's action, and that ended the legal 
question raised. Governor Vance received a great deal of credit 
for the blockade-running, but it is safe to say that had it not 
been for the energetic manner in which General Martin advo- 
cated this measure it would not have been commenced, although 
he got very little credit for it, except from the few who were 
aware of the facts. It is true that Governor Vance deserves 
credit for his approval of the liberal construction of the law 
which authorized it, after hearing the opinions of able and inilu- 
eutial lawyers against it. In addition to their opinions there was 

30 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

the influence of an able and unscrupulous politician at Raleigh, 
who at this time tried to throw every obstacle in the way of the 
success of the Confederate cause. He thought he could control 
Vance, as he had been influential in nominating and electing 
him. Vance, however, sided with the army. This was the first 
step in getting away from that influence. 

The above is the inside history of what took place before the 
Governor's approval of the blockade business. After the Gov- 
ernor's approval of the scheme, General Martin appointed Mr; 
John White, of Warrenton, N. C, State agent to go abroad, and 
also Colonel Thomas N., Crossan, formerly of the United States 
Navy, both of whom were to act together for the purchase of 
the ship. The Governor promptly signed the bonds for the pur- 
chase of the ship and supplies, and they were placed with Major 
John Devereux, who, as chief disbursing officer of the Quarter- 
master's Department, had charge of the matter from that time 
forward. In due time they' were turned over to Mr. White, 
when ready to go abroad. It is proper here to state that Mr. 
White and Colonel Crossan purchased a first-rate steamer, the 
"Lord Clyde," a splendid vessel in every respect. All the busi- 
ness intrusted to Mr. White and Colonel Crossan was ably and 
satisfactorily done ; no better agents could have been selected. 
Colonel Crossan made two or more trips in charge of the "Ad- 
Vance" and then retired. The '"Ad-Vance" made seven or eight 
trips to Wilmington and took in a large amount of military 
supplies for the North Carolina Troops and for the Confederacy 

The writer has tried to get the exact amount of army supplies 
imported by the State, but regrets to say that he has not been 
able to do so, although kindly assisted by Mrs. Hinsdale, who 
placed her father's papers (Major John Devereux), or rather 
"what was left of them not captured by the Yankees," at his 
disposal. The papers wanted could not be found. The fol- 
lowing report from Major Devereux to the Governor is pub- 
lished : 

Organization of Troops. 



Sum raised on cotton bonds 

Advanced by parties in England 

Disbursements now due in Wilmington 

Sum raised on rosin bonds 

Cash balance 

Sterling — 

One-half steamer "Ad- Vance" on hand — original 
cost £35,000, less 10 per cent, tear and wear __ 

One-fourth interest in three steamers — ■ 

3,788,066 pounds cotton at 5d. 

Sale of 4,080 bales cotton at £50 
















The report says: "Orders have been sent out by the Governor 
for scythe-blades, railroad findings and other articles not charged 
in the above account, no bill of them having been received. Mr. 
White's salary as commissioner has not yet been settled, and is 
not charged. Owing to the difficulties of communication, Colonel 
MacRae has not settled his account for the transaction by which 
rosin bonds were issued. It is believed that £6,000 would be 
the utmost extent of any further charge to be made. There is a 
large amount of goods, consisting of cloth, blankets, shoes, cot- 
ton and wool cards, card machines and factory findings now on 
the way and in the islands, of which no account has been taken. 
The goods are paid for, and, when received, will much increase 
the above balance. The purchase money of the "Ad- Vance" was 
partly paid in bonds, as entered above, and partly in cotton. The 
cotton is added to the stock on hand." 

Major Devereux's report above shows plainly that the fears 
of the Hon. B. F. Moore and others that the State might 
sustain loss were groundless. The cotton paid for the ship and 
supplies without drawing on the State Treasury. At all events, 
what was not paid at the date of the above report was paid after- 

32 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Mr. White's report, which accompanied the Governor's mes- 
sage in May, 1864, was not published, and cannot be given here. 

The writer asked Captain William H. Oliver, who took an 
"active part in purchasing supplies for the blockade-running, for 
a statement. He says : 

"Early in 1863 I was commissioned by Governor Z. B. Vance 
an agent for the State of North Carolina to purchase cotton for 
blockade-running purposes. The instruction which I received 
through Major John Devereux, Chief Quartermaster for North 
Carolina, was to buy every bale of cotton that I could purchase, 
and to pay a stipulated price of twenty cents per pounds. I went 
at once to the sections nearest the Federal lines, so as to get all 
the cotton out of the reach of the Federal troops if a raid should 
be made by them. 

" In a short time I purchased about seven thousand bales and 
paid for the same about seven hundred thousand dollars. On 
account of the scarcity of railroad accommodation it was a tedious 
matter to get the cotton moved. 

"Arrangements had been made to ship the cotton as fast as 
possible by running it through the blockade at Wilmington, N. C. 
A large portion of the cotton was taken to Graham, N. C, it being 
unsafe to leave it in the eastern part of the State. 

"Mr. John White, of Warrenton, N. C, was appointed agent 
for the sale of it in England. Mr. White sailed from Charles- 
ton, S. C.,on the steamer "Leopard" on the 15th day of Novem- 
ber, 1862. A number of cargoes were shipped to him, and from 
a report of his to Governor Vance it will be seen that he pur- 
chased with the proceeds of cotton and North Carolina cotton 
bonds — 

"The steamship "Lord Clyde," afterwards known as the "Ad- 
Vance," at a cost of £35,000— $175,000. 
150,115 yards gray cloth 6-4 wide. 
11,023 " " " 3-4 " 
28,582 " " flannel 6-4 " 
83,173 " " " ^3-4 " 

Organization op Troops. 33 

2,978 yards brown canvas padding. 
25,887 pairs gray blankets. 
37,692 " woolen socks. 
26,096 " army shoes. 
530 " cavalry boots. 

1,956 Angola shirts. 

7,872 yards gray flannel shirts. 

1,006 cloth overcoats. 

1,002 " jackets. 

1,010 pairs cloth trousers. 
Quantity of sole and harness leather. 
20,000 pairs army shoes. 
10,000 " gray blankets. 

1,920 " flannel shirts. 

5,800 yards army cloth 6-4. 
10,000 " " " 

7,000 pairs cotton and wool cards. 

5 machines for making cotton cards, with wire 
sufficient to keep them running twelve months. 

"A large quantity of the cotton was delivered by order of Gov- 
ernor Vance to Messrs. John Newland & Sons, at Saxapahaw 
Factory, to be manufactured into cloth and yarn. The cloth 
was delivered to the Quartermaster for the use of the army and 
the yarn was exchanged in Virginia for leather, which was made 
into shoes. The card machines were put up in Mr. William H. 
Willard's factory, and a large number of pairs of cards were 
made and distributed by me all over the State. 

"At the close of the war about two hundred bales of the cotton 
were at Graham, N. C, and it was taken by Colonel D. Heaton 
of the United States Treasury Department. 
" Very respectfully, 

"William H. Oliver." 

We give Captain Oliver's statemeut with the full knowledge 
and understanding that it is by no means complete. It embraces 
only a portion of the articles received. 

34 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

The Governor, in his message to the Legislature in Novem- 
ber, 1863, says: "The enterprise of running th< lockade and 
importing army supplies from abroad has proven a most com- 
plete success. You will see from the report that large quantities 
of clothing, leather and shoes, lubricating oils, factory findings, 
sheet-iron and tin, arms and ammunition, medicines, dye-stuifs, 
blankets, cotton bagging and rope, spirits, coffee, etc., have been 
safely brought, besides considerable freight for the Confederacy. 
Two thousand and ten bales of cotton have been sent to Liver- 
pool, the proceeds of which were deposited to the credit of the 
State, less the amount of the expenses of the vessel. With what 
we have imported and the purchases in our home markets I think 
I can safely say that the North Carolina Troops will be com- 
fortably clothed to January, 1865." 

It will be seen that the Governor mentions several articles not 
in Captain Oliver's -statement, such as "arms, ammunition, medi- 
cal supplies," etc. In fact, neither of the reports are complete, 
for the State continued to bring in supplies for twelve months 
after the date of the Governor's message. 

The most complete and trustworthy report we have on the 
subject is Governor Vance's address before the Association of the 
Maryland Line, delivered in Baltimore, February 23, 1885. He 
said : 

"By the general industry and thrift of our people, and by the 
use of a number of blockade-running steamers, carrying out cot- 
ton and bringing in supplies from Europe, I had collected and 
distributed from time to time, as near as can be gathered from 
the records of the Quartermaster's Department, the following 
stores: Large quantities of machinery supplies, 60,000 pairs of 
hand cards, 10,000 grain scythes, 200 barrels bluestone for the 
wheat growers, leather and shoes for 250,000 pairs, 50,000 blan- 
kets, gray-wooled cloth for at least 250,000 suits of uniforms, 
12,000 overcoats (ready-made), 2,000 best Enfield rifles (with 
100 rounds of fixed ammunition), 100,000 pounds of bacon, 
600 sacks of coffee for hospital use, $50,000 worth of medicines 
at gold prices, large quantities of lubricating oils, besides minor 

Organization of Troops. 35 

supplies of various isinds for the charitable inatitutions of the 
State. Not only was the supply of shoes, blankets and clothing 
more than sufficient for the supply of the North Carolina Troops, 
but large quantities were turned over to the Confederate Grov- 
ernment for the troops of other States. In the winter succeed- 
ing the battle of Chicamauga I sent to General Longstreet's 
Corps 14,000 suits of clothing complete. At the surrender of 
General Johnston the State had on hand, ready-made and in 
cloth, 92,000 suits of uniforms, with great stores of blankets, 
leather, etc. To make good the warrants on which these pur- 
chases had been made abroad the State purchased and had on 
hand in trust for the holders 11,000 bales of cotton and 100,000 
barrels of rosin. The cotton was partly destroyed before the 
war closed, the remainder, amounting to several thousand bales, 
was captured, after peace was declared, by certain officers of the 
Federal army." 

This shows that the operations of the blockade-running were a 
complete success, and fully justified the judgment and expecta- 
tions of Governor Vance and General Martin when they engaged 
in it. 

We will now drop the blockade-running and look at the 
issues to the troops. General Gatlin, in his report to the Gov- 
ernor, under date of May, 1864, says: 

" quartermaster's DEPART.MENT. 

" This department has furnished clothing, camp and garrison 
equipage, pay, bounty and transportation for the troops and 
paid other miscellaneous accounts. The disbursements for the 
eighteen months ending the 31st of March, 1864, are as follows 
(we omit cents) : 

Clothing, camp and garrison equipage, $ 6,862,043 
Mules, wagons and harness, . . 14,147 

Forage, 5,593 - 

Horses for two regiments of cavalry and 

artillery, ' 147,801 

36 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Wood, $ 6,655 

Miscellaneous, 204,143 

Pay of troops, .... 432,071 

Bounty, 1,669,974 

Cotton, 2,150,998 

Advances to officers, . . . 186,803 


"The Confederate States have paid for clothing since the 1st 
of January, r863, the sum of $6,008,373.38, and there is still 
due for clothing turned over in the first quarter of the present 
year $1,247,236." 

It seems from General Gatlin's report that the State was issu- 
ing clothing to the army at the rate of nearly five million dollars 
a year. Notwithstanding all that the State of North Carolina 
did for the army, it is well known to those who were in the army 
that it was often greatly in want of shoes and clothing, and it is 
sad to contemplate what would have been the condition of the 
gallant Army of Northern Virginia without the great help which 
North Carolina gave it, ia which most of her troops were. It 
is well known that the Army of the West was still harder pressed 
for supplies. It had no State to do for it what North Carolina 
did for Lee's army, and it appears from Governor Vance's speech 
at Baltimore that the State had to dispatch "14,000 suits of 
clothing complete" to General Longstreet's Corps of that army, 
after the battle of Chicamauga. And after furnishing its own 
troops and other Confederate troops when necessary, the State 
had on hand at the surrender "92,000 suits of uniforms and 
great stores of blankets and leather." The reports fully show 
that the Quartermaster's Department of the State of North 
Carolina was ably managed from the beginning to the end. In 
this respect it was a long way ahead of the Confederacy, which 
was so sorely pressed all the time. 

We have no later reports of what was done the last year of 
the war, but as the State of North Carolina had an abundant 
supply of everything, and the Confederacy had not, it is reason- 
able to suppose the issues were very large. 

Organization of Troops. 37 


The Subsistence Department of the State of North Carolina 
at the comoaencement of the war was under the direction of 
Colonel William Johnston, Major D. G. Fowle, Captains Wm. W. 
Morrison, David Schenck, Augustus S. Merrimon and John 
Devereux. Colonel Johnston was a man of energy, with broad 
views and enlarged ideas. One of the first things he did after 
it was plain that the war was coming was to send an agent to 
Louisville, Ky., to purchase a large amount of supplies at that 
place, which he had hurriedly shipped to Chattanooga before an 
embargo was placed on the railroads. By so doing he got a large 
lot of provisions from an exposed point and saved the resources 
of the State. Had this example been taken by the Confederate 
States Commissary the supplies of the Confederacy would not 
have been so scant. On the 1st of September, 1861, Colonel 
Johnston resigned to take charge of the railroad of which he was 
president, and all the other officers of the department accepted 
other duties. 

After the reorganization of the September, 1861, 
Major T. D. Hogg was Chief Commissary, and continued in 
charge to the end of the war. The writer tried to get reports 
of the operations of the department from the officers still living, 
but failed, except one letter from Major Hogg, in which he says : 

"Judge Clark asked me to write out the Commissary Depart- 
ment, and I told him I did not know there was anything to write. 
Also, that you told me when we first met that General Martin, 
when he asked for anything in my department, would expect me 
to have it. I made up my mind that if .the. people would part 
with their commissary stores and take paper money for payment 
General Martin should have what he called for. The conse- 
quence was that my supplies grew during the whole war, and at 
the close of it I was feeding about half of Lee's army. Major, 

38 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Carringtou would come to me begging, and I told him to get 
Yaoce's order and he should have anything I had." 

This is not very long, but it is a very important historical .fact 
that near the end of the war the North Carolina Commissary 
was, feeding about half of Lee's army. 

General Martin's report in November, 1862, says: 


The disbursements for the year are, . $586,767 

Sales to Confederate States, . |1 57,412 

Value of stores on hand, . . 24,395 


Actual expenses of the department, $404,960 

General Gatlin's report gives 

The actual expenses of the department, $1,080,958 
Sales to Confederate States, . 301,197 

Stores on hand, . . . 410,070 


Actual expenses of the department, . $369,691 

This is the last published report in May, 1864. As the de- 
partment had $410,070 in supplies on hand and still adding from 
March 31, 1864, till the end of the war, it was able to furnish 
considerable to Lee's army. 

No department of the Confederate States Government was so 
severely criticised as the Commissary. In the army and out of 
it, in the newspapers, particularly the Richmond Examiner, 
and even in the halls of Congress, its inefBciency was forcibly 
pointed out. The soldiers of the Confederacy had for about a year 
only one-third of a pound of meat ration issued to them. Many 
believed it was due to want of energy of the department. Presi- 
dent Davis finally made a change, but, alas, so late that no 
human being could overcome the disadvantages which surrounded 
the Confederacy. Therefore, those who are familiar with war 
events will not be in the least surprised to learn that the better 
managed Commissary of North Carolina was, before the end of 
the war, " feeding about half of Lee's army." 

Organization of Troops. 39 


A writer in the Enoydopcedia Britanica, under the head of 
North Carolina, says: "At the breaking out of the war between 
the States in 1861 North Carolina, strongly averse to secession, 
sought by every means to avert the conflict, remaining unmoved 
after all the surrounding States had seceded, and was forced into 
the struggle almost last of the Southern States, and when there 
remained only the alternative of a choice of sides. Being near 
the seat of war, and yet for the most part outside of it, the State 
contributed more largely to the commissary supplies of the Con- 
federacy, and also sent into the field a larger number of troops 
and lost more men in battle than any other Slate, her soldiers 
having a conspicuous share in all the great battles from Bull 
Run to Petersburg." There is the case clearly, correctly and 
concisely stated. The State so averse to war had to choose sides, 
and when President Lincoln called for troops Governor Ellis 
replied, "I can be no party to this wicked violation of the laws 
of this country, and especially to this war which is being waged 
upon a free and independent people." Governor Ellis seeing 
plainly the dangers that threatened the State, a few days later 
ordered the capture of the Fayetteville Arsenal and the forts on 
the coast. With the heaven-born inspiration of a great com- 
mander, he did not delay to give the enemy time to capture or 
destroy the arsenal, as was done in the two great Southern States 
of Virginia and Missouri. In the former the arsenal at Harper's 
Ferry was destroyed by United States soldiers and in the latter it 
was captured and the guns turned against the brave Missourians. 
For the following list of arms captured at Fayetteville the writer 
is indebted to his friend, Mr. Cowper, who obtained the informa- 
tion from Colonel Pemberton and Major Hale : 

[From the Observer, Thursday, April 25, 1861.1 
"The arsenal was surrendered on Monday, April 22, 1861, 
at 3 P. M. 

40 ISToETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

"The arsenal buildings and machinery have probably cost the 
United States more than a quarter million dollars. The ma- 
chinery especially is very perfect for the manufacture of every 
implement of war. There are four brass six-pounders and two 
brass twelve-pound howitzers, forming a complete "battery," 
in military phrase, with all the horse trappings, and two old 
make iron six-pounders, thirty-seven thousand muskets and rifles, 
with other military stores and a large quantity of powder. Lieu- 
tenant John A. Pemberton of the Fayetteville Light Infantry 
is temporarily in charge of the arsenal." 

We beg leave to branch off a little and here state that Colonel 
Pemberton has now in his possession the first cannon-ball shot 
from the Federal side at Bethel on North Carolina Troops, which 
came near killing General D. H. Hill. 

The capture of the Fayetteville Arsenal, with its thirty-seven 
thousand stand of arms, placed North Carolina in the front rank 
of Southern States. Ten or twelve thousand of these were given 
to the State of Virginia, not quite so fortunate as North Caro- 
lina, on account of the destruction of the arsenal at Harper's 
Ferry, already mentioned. These arms were rapidly placed in 
the hands of the North Carolina Troops as fast as recruited, and 
there appeared to be no trouble till it came to the turn of the 
Thirty-first North Carolina Troops. This regiment was organ- " 
ized on the 19th of September, 1861, and the writer well recol- 
lects several interviews from both Colonel Jordan and Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Fowle in regard to arms for their regiment. The 
arms of the State were already issued, and the Confederate Gov- 
ernment refused to furnish arms to twelve-months volunteers. 
The officers of the Thirty-first had to collect arras in the counties 
in which the companies were raised ; as far as memory serves 
principally from the militia the old arras they had. In this 
condition the regiment was sent to Roanoke Island, the worst 
armed up to this date turned over by the State. But it was the 
best the State could do. From that time till the spring of 1862 
the State was greatly pressed for arms. Some old arms were 

Organization op Teoops. 41 

collected from the militia, altered aad repaired and made service- 
able. General Martin made contracts with several establish- 
ments for this kind of work. His report to the Governor shows 
that contracts were made by which three hundred were to be 
altered and repaired every month. The Confederate States fur- 
nished arms for the Thirty-third North Carolina Troops, as that 
regiment was enlisted for the war; but at present memory can- 
not recall any other arms received from the Government till the 
spring of 1862, when the troops at Camp Mangum were armed 
to go to Richmond. 

In the fall of 1861, month not recollected now, the Hon. 
Judah P. Benjamin, Secretary of War, in a letter to the 
Governor of North Carolina, said it would not be necessary to 
make large contracts for military supplies for any great length 
of time, as the war would not last long, or words to that effect. 
This baneful idea entertained by the head of the War Depart- 
ment no doubt paralyzed all the departments of the Government, 
and most valuable time was lost in procuring war materials. 
With a very imperfect blockade the first year of the war, very 
little advantage was taken of it by the Confederate Government, 
and none by the States. It is undoubtedly true that the Gov- 
ernment imported some war materials, but nothing commensurate 
^with its wants. In the fall of 1861 from every Southern State 
came a call for arms, with the Government unable to supply but 
very few. The Governor of the great Commonwealth of Vir- 
ginia, unable to get arms from the Government, sent an officer to 
the Governor of North Carolina with a request for arms, hoping 
that some could be furnished. The Governor of North Caro- 
lina had none to furnish. From " Pollard's Southern History 
of the War" it appears that the Southwest was equally as bad 
off for arms as the States of Virginia and North Carolina. The 
historian, in writing about General A. S. Johnston's army at 
Bowling Green, Ky., in October, 1861, says: "He repeatedly 
called upon the Government for re-inforcements. He made a 
call upon several States of the Southwest, including Tennessee, 
for a large number of troops. The call was revoked at the 

42 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

instance of the authorities in Richmond, who declined to furnish 
twelve-months volunteers with arms." The fact of the case is, 
the Government had very few arms to furnish, and volunteering 
came almost to a stop on that account. 

The writer is satisfied that North Carolina could duriug the 
fall and winter of 1861 have had ten thousand more men iu the 
field had there been arms to put in their hands. What is true 
of North Carolina, with its thirty-seven thousand stand of arms 
to start with, must be equally true in regard to the other States. 
The Confederate Government could have had one hundred thou- 
sand more men in the field in the spring of 1862 if it had used 
energy in getting arms for them. With cotton selling in the 
South for ten cents in currency and in Liverpool for forty to 
fifty cents in gold, and only an imperfect blockade, there was no 
valid reason why the arms should not be on hand. The idea 
entertained by the War Department, as above stated, we fear, is 
responsible for it all, and found the South unprepared at every 
point attacked in the spring of 1862. This unprepared condi- 
tion cost the South millions of property, important territory 
never firmly regained, thousands of valuable lives, and perhaps 
its independence. The valor of the Confederate soldiers, who at 
every point fought against fearful odds, saved the South from 
being overrun in the spring of 1862, and not the energy dis- 
played by the Government in getting prepared for the struggle. 

We will now return to North Carolina history proper. Gov- 
ernor Clark and General Martin, though both extremely hopeful 
of the final results of the war, were not so hopeful as the 
Secretary of War. Soon after the Secretary's letter was received 
the Governor dispatched an agent to England to purchase arms 
for the State. The first installment, two thousand, was received 
in the spring of 1862, no transportation could be obtained for 
them sooner; and Governor Vance reports two thousand more 
received by the "Ad- Vance." This is all we can trace up, but 
believe more were received. 

During the fall of 1861 General Martin made arrangements 
with several small establishments in the State to make arms. 

Organization of Teoops. 43 

He engaged two Frenchmen to make sabres, swords, bayonets, 
etc., at Wilmington. They manufactured a large number, which 
were immediately given to the troops, sabres being greatly 
needed for the cavalry. Some mechanics in Guilford county 
entered into a contract to make three hundred new rifles per 
month. The Governor referred to this contract in his message 
to the Legislature. As near as can be ascertained, ten thousand 
rifles were received under this contract, making a total of fifty- 
one thousand stand of arms put in the hands of soldiers by the 
State of North Carolina. A large number of old arms were al- 
tered and repaired, of which no accurate account can be given here. 
The State encouraged every effort for manufacturing every- 
thing needed for the troops. Here we will copy a report of the 
issues of the Ordnance Department of the State of North Caro- 
lina from June 30, 1861, to September 30, 1862: 

"Twenty-one thousand one hundred and forty muskets, 6,831 
rifles, 609 Hall's carbines, 2,241 pistols, 2,057 swords, 43,898 
cartridge-boxes, 22,773 belts, 39,999 waist belts, 41,131 cap 
pouches, 33,889 bayonet scabbards, 24,096 gun slings, 1,390,934 
cartridges, 34,244 pounds cannon powder, 44,754 pounds mus- 
ket and rifle powder, 1,572,850 musket caps, 64,959 pounds 
lead, 1,660 saddles, 1,136 saddle-bags, 1,327 bridles, 1,193 
halters, 834 bridles, 104 martingales, 838 holsters, 18 sets artil- 
lery harness, 4,105 pounds musket balls, 253 pounds buckshot, 
81 boxes cannon ammunition, 893 double-barrel shotguns, 13 
single-barrel guns, 559 pounds blasting powder, 93,000 shot- 
gun caps, 1,361 pairs spurs, and 2 six-pound field brass pieces." 

General Martin's report of the expenditures of the department 
from October 1, 1861, to September 30, 1862, was $512,713. 
General Gatlin's report from October 1, 1862, to March 31, 
1864, was $1,160,595. 

No later reports were published, and owing to the death of all 
the officers who had charge of the department, no detailed account 
can be given for the last year of the war. 

In connection with the Ordnance Department will be given 
an account of the effort made by the State for the manufacture 

44 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

of powder. General Martin, in his report to the Governor, 
says: "The State, through Governor Clark, advanced Messrs. 
Waterhouse & Bowes ten thousand dollars towards erecting the 
Raleigh Powder Mill. After the mill was put in operation it 
was destroyed by explosion. At the solicitation of Governor 
Clark they purchased the paper mills for the purpose of build- 
ing another mill, and twelve thousand dollars was advanced to 
them. Both of these sums are to be refunded in four equal 
installments. This sum, with the private funds of Messrs. 
Waterhouse & Bowes, being inadequate to complete the mill, 
you [Governor Vance] advanced them eight thousand dollars. 
The mill will be near enough completed by the first of Decem- 
ber to commence operation, and will yield weekly about four 
thousand pounds powder." 

The above investment was secured by mortgage to make the 
State safe. The enterprise proved a complete success, and we 
find in General Gatlin's report the following year that the State 
turned over to the Confederate Government over half a million 
dollars' worth of powder and paid the State for the amount ad- 
vanced. There is every reason to believe it did equally as well 
the last year of the war, though no reports are available. 

The State also engaged in the manufacture of ammunition. 
General Gatlin, in his report, says: "The operations of the car- 
tridge and moulding factory were for a time impeded on account 
of the great difficulty of procuring lead, but a good supply of 
that article having been accumulated by means of the State's 
importing vessels, the factory is now in full operation." The 
policy of the State from the commencement of the struggle was 
to encourage the manufacture at home of everything needed, and 
the Adjutant-Generals of the State always had the ready approval 
of Governors Clark and Vance for everything that was likely to 
succeed and help the Confederate cause. From these reports it 
can be seen that the State was engaged in importing arms and 
manufacturing them in the State also, making sabres, swords 
saddles, etc. Also in aiding the development of the powder 
mill and the manufacture of ammunition. Nothing that could 
be of service to the Confederacy was overlooked. 

Organization of Troops. 45 


The operations of this department were under the charge of 
Major A. M. Lewis, Paymaster, assisted by Lieutenant E. G. 
Lewis, Assistant Paymaster. Its duties being clearly defined by 
law, did not involve any of the intricate questions of supply and 
demand of the other departments. It is, however, proper to 
state here that the duties were at all times satisfactorily performed. 
The disbursements under this head are included in the Quarter- 
master's Department. 


The Convention appointed a Board of Claims, or rather board 
of auditors, composed of the Hons. B. F. Moore, Samuel 
F. Phillips and P. H. Winston, three very able lawyers. It 
was the duty of this board to examine all the accounts and see 
that the expenditures were made according to law. To the eter- 
nal honor of the disbursing officers of the State of North Caro- 
lina during the war, this learned body was not able to find any 
mistakes or any disbursements not strictly within the letter of 
the law. 

We will now sum up what North Carolina did during the war. 
It put in the field not less than one hundred aud twenty-seven 
thousand men, and in all probability more, and issued to them, 
without the assistance of the Confederate States, fifty-one thou- 
sand stand of arms and all the necessary equipments. It fur- 
nished horses for two regiments of cavalry and several light 
batteries, with all the necessary equipments for both branches of 

46 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

the service. Also equipments for the three other regiments of 
cavalry, where the men furnished their own horses. It had 
sabres, saddles, etc., manufactured for the cavalry before the 
Confederate States could supply the troops raised with them. It 
furnished transportation to the troops to camps of instruction 
and well drilled them before they were turned over to the Con- 
federate States. It furnished subsistence, clothing, camp and 
garrison equipage for the troops as raised, and continued to 
clothe them to the end of the war. When its supplies of cloth- 
ing and shoes were found inadequate it sent to England, pur- 
chased a fine steamer and brought in several cargoes of army 
supplies and various other things greatly needed. To lessen the 
risk of capture, it sold one-half of the "Ad-Vance" and invested 
in three other steamers. It shipped to England a large amount 
of cotton to pay for the ship and supplies. The money paid by 
the Confederate States for clothing was invested in cotton, and 
with the cotton more clothing and supplies were purchased. 
This was able financial management without costing the State 
one dollar; and it kept the troops of North Carolina well clothed 
during the war. 

The State bought a large portion of the provisions used in the 
early part of the war at Louisville and horses for the first cav- 
alry from the blue-grass regions of Kentucky, securing them 
from remote points and saving State supplies, before the Con- 
federacy awoke to the importance of getting supplies from ex- 
posed places. 

We will give a detailed statement of the expenditures by 
North Carolina for the war. 

General Martin's report from October 1, 1861, to September 
30, 1862: 

Quartermaster's Department, . . $4,502,729 
Subsistence, .... 404,956 

Ordnance, 512,731 

General Gatlin's report from October 1, 1862, to March 31 

Organization of Troops. 47 

Quartermaster's Department, . . |11, 680,131 

Subsistence, 1,080,958 

Ordnance, 1,160,595 

Sales of powder to the Confederate States, 521,563 
There is no published report of the ex- 
penditures from the commencement of 
the war to September 30 — we estimate 

low, 600,000 

No published report of the expenditures 

later than March 31, 1864— we estimate, 6,000,000 


Here we have a total of over twenty-six million dollars con- 
tributed by North Carolina to the war, without mentioning the 
arms taken at Fayette ville. In regard to the estimate of six 
millions for the last year of the war. General Gatlin says in his 
report "there is still due $1,247,235 for clothing turned over in 
the first quarter," showing that the issues of clothing alone would 
araouut to about five million dollars. One, million for all the 
other articles is undoubtedly below the mark. The State of 
North Carolina exercised its full sovereign powers in the prose- 
cution of the war from the beginning, and did not become an 
applicant for support from the Confederate Government. On 
the contrary, the Government was always heavily in debt to it 
for supplies of all kinds. 

If a correct and unbiased history of the war is ever written 
it will undoubtedly be seen that North Carolina put more men 
in the field, according to its white population in 1860, than any 
other State North or South, and that its devotion to the cause 
and energy in prosecuting the war cannot be matched by any other 
State. The pages of history may be searched in vain for greater 
achievements by any State or country than those accomplished by 
North Carolina during the war. With its ports blockaded, fur- 
nishing twenty-six million dollars' worth of supplies to the Con- 
federate cause, a considerable portion of which was brought from 

48 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

abroad, and, as Governor Vance says, "considerable other freight 
for the Confederacy." Last, though not least, from Major T. D. 
Hogg's report it appears that the Commissary Department of 
North Carolina "was feeding about half of Lee's army" before 
the sun of the Confederacy went down. In every department 
the State of North Carolina ably sustained the army and Gov- 
ernment, almost stepping outside of its legitimate duties in engag- 
ing in the manufacture of powder and ammunition for the Gov- 
ernment, as already mentioned. We can state without fear of 
contradiction, that no Southern State can show anything approxi- 
mating this record. 

The State of North Carolina has reason to be proud of the 
record made by her troops in the field, which is known wherever 
the English language is spoken. It has equal reason to be proud 
of the record made by the executive and military departments of 
the State. Great credit is due to the three War Governors of the 
State — Ellis, Clark and Yance. Each and all of them supported 
the Confederate Government without any friction, which, unfor- 
tunately, was not the case in some other States. Credit is also 
due to Colonels Hoke, Branch and Johntson for valuable services 
during the early stages of the war, to General Martin for the 
splendid condition in which the troops of North Carolina were 
organized andthe efficiency of the military departments established 
according to his directions, and for his energetic perseverance in 
advocating the blockade-running until he finally secured its 
approval, and to General Gatlin for the efficient discharge of 
the duties while he was Adjutant-General. General Fo'wle was 
so short a time in charge that nothing of any special importance 
occurred to note here. But while giving credit to each and all 
of these, we must not overlook the valuable services performed 
by three unassuming, faithful and efficient officers at Raleigh, 
Major John Devereux, Chief Quartermaster, who, in addition to 
his other duties, so ably managed all the details of the blockade 
business; Major T. D. Hogg, Commissary, whose store-houses 
were always well filled, and Captain A. W. Lawrence, Ordnance 
Officer. They and their assistants had to perform all the detail 

Organization of Troops. 49 

duties of the vast amount of business done at Raleigh during most 
of the war, all of which was well done. 

We cannot close this narrative without saying something about 
the women of the State of Noi'th Carolina. No women in any 
age or country were more devoted to a cause than were those of 
North Carolina to the Confederacy. The women of the State, by 
their love, devotion and fortitude, contributed as much to the 
Southern cause as the men who were fighting the battles, and 
they are now foremost in raising monuments to the dead and 
preserving the records of the struggle, as they were foremost in 
all good works during the war. In the dark and dismal winter 
of 1861, when neither the State nor Confederacy was able to sup- 
ply the troops as they should have been, the women of North Caro- 
, lina, in addition to what they contributed through the State officers 
to be sent to the army, sent direct during the last three months 
of that year, according to "Pollard's History," three hundred and 
twenty-five thousand dollars' worth of supplies, which were 
recorded at the passport office in Richmond and permits given 
to have them taken to the army. This is the only record we have 
of voluntary contributions, but we know they were continued 
to the end of the war. Many cases have come to the knowledge 
of the writer where these kind acts were continued to disabled 
soldiers and their families long after the war was ended. 

I will now bid the old guard farewell. Though temporarily 
absent from the State, I hope to be there again before the final 
roll-call; but be that as it may, the glorious achievements of the 
North Carolina Troops, with which I have been humbly associ- 
ated during the war, will remain dear to me as long as memory 
lasts. Respectfully submitted, 

A. Gordon. 
HuLDA, La., 

April 9, 1900. 




Major Gordon, Assistant Adjutant-General during General 
Martin's administration, in closing his article on the history of 
the Adjutant-General's office to that time suggested that I should 
continue the history to the close of the war. This is the 
object of this paper, with such addenda as may appear of 

The Adjutant-General, I think, was elected or confirmed by 
vote of the General Assembly. Governor Vance was elected 
Governor in August, 1862, and inaugurated January 1, 186.3. 
The principal candidates for Adjutant-General were Hon. (after- 
wards Governor) Daniel G. Fowle, of Wake, and Captain John 
Randolph (of Northampton county), Company H, Second North 
Carolina Cavalry. The Legislature, by resolution or act, con- 
ferred upon the Governor the right to appoint the Adjutant- 
General. Daniel G. Fowle was appointed. 

Major R. S. Tucker was appointed Assistant Adjutant-Gen- 
eral. He commanded an independent cavalry company, which 
was placed in the Third North Carolina Cavalry on the forma- 
tion of that regiment. After several months' service General 
Fowle resigned on account of a disagreement between him and 
the Surgeon-General as to the right of the latter to report directly 
to the Governor and not through the Adjutant-General's office 
the Governor sustaining the Surgeon-General. Brigadier-Gen- 
eral R. C. Gatlin was appointed. He had been an officer in the 
United States Army, was brevetted for gallantry in the Mexi- 

Organization of Tkoops. 51 

can war, and had served as Brigadier-General in tiie Confederate 

In October, Major Tucker resigned and Captain W. A. Gra- 
ham, of the North Carolina Cavalry, was appointed Assistant 
Adjutant-General. He had been wounded at Gettysburg, July 3d. 

The officers of the department to the close of the war were 
Brigadier-General R. C. Gatlin, Adjutant-General; Major W. 
A. Graham, Jr., Assistant Adjutant-General; Lieutenant John B. 
Neathery, Assistant Adjutant-General; Lieutenant I. H. Ben- 
nett, Assistant Adjutant-General; Lieutenant T. W. Slocum, As- 
sistant Adjutant-General. 

Roll of Honor Department — Major James H. Foote, Assistant 

Surgeons — Edward Warren, M. D., Surgeon-General; Otis F. 
Mason, M. D., Surgeon in charge Richmond Hospital. 

Quartermaster — Major John Devereux, Quartermaster; Major 
Henry C. Dowd, Quartermaster; Captain Thaddeus McGee, As- 
sistant Quartermaster. 

Commissary — Major Thomas D. Hogg, Commissary. 

Paymaster — Major W. B. Gulick. 

Ordnance Officer — Lieutenant Josiah Collins. 

The passage of the conscript act by the Confederate Con- 
gress early in 1862 declared all men between eighteen and 
forty-five years of age subject to military duty, except those 
designated by the States as necessary for State service and exemp- 
tions specified by law. These exemptions were preachers, school 
teachers, overseers of twenty negroes, manufacturors and their 
laborers, editors and printers, and perhaps others not now recol- 

The Confederate States, through its conscript bureau, executed 
the law, collecting and forwarding the conscripts to the armies. 
There was nothing for the State to do along this line. The State 
exempted the State and county officers, justices of the peace, 
officers of the militia regiments and the Sixty-seventh and Sixty- 
eighth Regiments North Carolina Troops, Henry's Battalion, 

52 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Wynn's Battalion and some companies which had been enlisted 
as State forces. 

The State officers, justices of the peace and militia officers were 
organized into companies and by counties into battalions and 
were designated by law as Home Guards. The field officers were 
appointed by the Governor for the different counties. Colonel 
Collett Leventhorpe, who had been Colonel of the Thirty-fourth 
Regiment and also Colonel of the Eleventh Regiment, and 
who had been severely wounded at Gettysburg, was appointed 
to command the State Home Guard, with the rank of Briga- 
dier-General. The force when called into the field made, I 
think, four regiments. It was used to arrest deserters from the 
Confederate army, quell disturbances, and was called to Wil- 
mington in December, 1864, to assist in repelling General B. F. 
Butler's attack. I do not recollect that it was ever actually 
engaged in battle with the Yankees. 

In 1864 Congress extended the ages of service in the conscript 
act so as to include seventeen to eighteen and forty-five to fifty 
years. The former were designated Junior Reserves, the latter 
Senior Reserves. They were organized by counties into compa- 
nies of each class and these into regiments and battalions. The 
conscripts (eighteen to forty-five years) were not so organized, 
but when they reported to the bureau they were assigned to regi- 
ments whose ranks had been reduced in numbers, without any 
consideration as to where the companies were enlisted. There 
were three regiments and several battalions of Junior Reserves 
and two of Seniors. 


In 1862 this department of the Adjutant-General's office was 
established. Major James H. Foote was appointed to manage 
it. The object was to procure a history of each soldier furnished 
by the State, and have it arranged by companies and regiments. 
Blanks were prepared similar to muster-rolls.for a description of 
the service of each soldier. These were copied into books pre- 
pared after the same manner. A history of the regiment as a whole 
was to precede the history of the soldier by companies. If the 

Organization of Thoops. , 53 

officers to whom these blanks were sent to be filled had attended 
to having it properly done the history of the North Carolina 
soldiers would have been complete. Many of these officers 
(under false ideas of modesty, perhaps) paid little attention to 
the matter, and the blanks were either never filled or not returned 
to Major Foote when completed. Deeds of themselves and com- 
rades which would add lustre to the record and correct or con- 
tradict misrepresentation by others will never be known. 

The average North Carolinian is a queer citizen, in that he 
seems to hold the opinion that if a man or a company perform 
the duty assigned, and is satisfied at the time with their conduct, 
it does not matter whether any one else knows of it, or what 
opinion they may have of the transaction. 

I think about two-thirds of the companies returned the blanks 
more or less completed. They were copied in the books and are now 
in the Adjutant-General's office or the State Library at Raleigh. 


This was done by the Home Guard. The orders were issued 
from the Adjutant-General's office, and perhaps would now be 
mistaken for a circular from political headquarters, as they con- 
tained the following sentence: "This order is to embrace all male 
negroes between twenty-one and forty-five years of age in your 

The number called for being stated by the Confederate author- 
ities, one out of a specified number (generally eight, I think) was 
taken. None were taken from those owning only one, unless 
the quota was unfilled from those owning more. Sometimes it was 
necessary to "lump" the owners and decide in some way which 
one negro should be selected. After collecting the negroes they 
were|earried to the designated places and turned over to the 
Confederate officers. 

THE "ad- VANCE." 

The "Ad- Vance" continued to run the blockade to Ber- 
muda, making a trip in about sixty days, carrying out cotton 
and Bringing supplies for the soldiers. North Carolina clothed 

54 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

the soldiers she furnished the Confederacy and the Government 
paid the State. The consequence was that the North'Carolinians 
were better clothed than the troops of any other State, and this 
fact gave Governor Vauce a warm place in the soldiers' hearts. 
The Governor had a supply of cotton and wool cards imported 
by the "Ad-Vance," which were very valuable to the soldiers' 
wives and daughters in preparing yarn for clothing. I suppose 
some of these, although well worn and now discarded, are held 
as heir-looms by women of this generation. 

It was necessary in running the blockade to use coal that 
would not make much smoke. A supply was kept on hand for 
the ship at Wilmington. In September, 1864, the Confederate 
Cruiser "Tennessee," coming into Wilmington, took on its de- 
parture the coal intended for the next trip of the "Ad-Vance." 
This made it necessary to use inferior coal, and, being tracked 
by the smoke, the "Ad- Vance" was pursued by the blockading 
fleet and captured. Governor Vance called the attention of the 
Legislature to this, and recommended that demand be made on 
the Confederate Government for payment for the ship and cargo. 


The officers of the Home Guard appreciated their position as 
much as any set of men connected with the war. If the corre-. 
spondence of the office has been preserved there are many letters 
and reports that would be entertaining to those who were further 
to " the front." One captain (from Moore county, I think) 
wrote about as follows : 

"Mr. Gov. Vance: 

" Dear Sir : — If I was Governor, I'll agree to go to hell if I 
wouldu't be Governor." 

Then followed a complaint of some man in his neighborhood 
who was distilling corn, which he thought ought to be kept for 
the soldiers' families, and he desired authority and orders to 
stop him forthwith. 

Oeganization of Troops. 55 

OLD men's guard. 

In the summer of 1864, in many of the towns, the men above 
the Senior Reserve age, or exempt from disability, formed com- 
panies, procured arms and drilled " in the cool of the evenings" 
several times a week. They presented a picture of a peculiar 
type. I have frequently seen one of them who served in the 
United States Congress in Monroe's administration repairing to 
the rendezvous under a silk umbrella, raised to ward off the 
sun, while his colored dining-room servant brought up the rear, 
carrying the musket with which he was to drill. He was not 
alone in thus showing his zeal for his country's defease. As 
they stood in line the commander often repeated the command : 
"Gentlemen, please keep your pieces erect." 

lee's army in 1865. 

Each month there were sent to the regimental commanders of 
North Carolina Troops blanks for reports, partly to ascertain 
how much clothing it was necessary to prepare. The reports 
which came in March, 1865, one month before the surrender, 
showed thirty-five thousand men for duty, as I now recollect. 


It seemed certain that General Sherman would reach Raleigh 
in his march, and in February and March, 1865, the books and 
papers not necessary for daily use were boxed and shipped to 
Statesville. General Joe Johnston's army, with General Beau- 
regard's (the latter were troops serving on the coasts of South 
Carolina, Georgia and North Carolina), assembled between Ral- 
eigh and Goldsboro, near Selma. At the invitation of General 
Johnston, Governor Vance reviewed these troops. After General 
Lee evacuated his lines around Richmond all people who appre- 
ciated the situation believed the end was nigh. It was no sur- 
prise when at the depot at Hillsboro, on Monday night, April 
11th, the train brought the news " General Lee has surrendered." 
Governor Swain had written Governor Graham to meet him in 

56 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Raleigh the next day to confer with Governor Vance on the 
situation. They were thus on hand when needed. General 
Johnston, after the battle of Bentonsville, having announced 
his intention to evacuate Raleigh at an early day, Governor 
Yance sent them as a commission to General Sherman to se- 
cure the city from pillage,' to preserve the property of the 
State, and to learn what his intentions were as to the officers of 
the State. Governor Graham prepared the papers, and a per- 
mit to pass the lines having been signed by Lieutenant-General 
Hardee, an engine drawing a coach in which were the commis- 
sioners, Surgeon-General Warren, Majors Devereux and Hogg, 
and Colonel J. G. Burr, of the Governor's staff, was started. 
For some reason General Johnston or President Davis tele- 
graphed General Hardee to withdraw the permit He signalled 
the outposts and the train was stopped, and started on its return. 
General Kilpatrick's advance, traveling the dirt road, struck the 
railroad ahead of the car, and, although it bore a white flag, fired 
into it, commanding a halt, and insisted they were prisoners. 
They were sent to General Sherman's headquarters, who said 
they had come out in good faith and should be allowed to return 
the same way, but that it was now too late to go that night. 
They laid their business before him. Governor Graham spent 
the night with General Sherman in his tent. Governor Swain, 
with General Frank P. Blair, who had been a student at Chapel 
Hill under his presidency. 


General Sherman, in conversation, told Governor Graham 
that he had seen the President the week before, and asked him 
if he wished him to capture Jeff Davis. Mr. Lincoln replied: 
"I will tell you a circumstance. Once there was a temperance 
lecturer in Indiana, who, on going home after the lecture with a 
sister, asked for a drink of water. She asked him if he would 
not like to have something stronger in it. "He replied: "If 
you could get a little in " unbeknownst " to me, I would't care 
if you did." 

Organization of Troops. 57 

This appears to have been said at a Cabinet meeting. After- 
wards, when Stanton, Secretary of War, seemed anxious to 
capture President Davis, General Sherman remarljs in a post- 
script to a letter to Chief Justice Chase ("Records War of Rebel- 
lion," p. 412, No. 100) "to this hour the War Department has 
sent me no orders to hunt for, arrest or capture Jeff Da\'is, but 
on the contrary, as near as I know, their wish is that he escape, 
provided it be unknown to them." 


General Sherman agreed to have measures taken to pre- 
serve the property of the State and city. As to the affairs 
of the State, he said that when " there was no interference with 
him he had nothing to do with them, but left them for the 
courts to deal with." General Hardee informed Governor 
Vance that he would "uncover" the city at 12 o'clock that 
night. At that hour Governor Vance left Raleigh and pro- 
ceeded to Hillsboro. General Sherman returned the commis- 
sioners to Raleigh early the next morning, as the Confederates 
were leaving and the Yankees entering the city. Governor 
Graham was to endeavor to go on to Governor Vance and Gov- 
ernor Swain to remain in Raleigh to see that protection was 
afforded. Between St. Mary's and where the Agricultural and 
Mechanical College- now stands Governor Graham found him- 
self between the lines and a brisk skirmish just opening. 
The Confederates retiring, he saw no opportunity of reaching 
Governor Vance, and returned to the city to make other arrange- 
ments. Report that he had been wounded between the lines had 
reached General Sherman, and he seemed much relieved to find 
it not so. 

Conveyance was procured from a friend, and Governor Swain 
joining him, they came on to Hillsboro the next day, reaching 
there about 8:30 P. M. They found Governor Vance taking 
tea with Governor Graham's family. 

The commissioners made their report, but as Raleigh had 

68 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

been evacuated it was thought best to make no attempt to return 
until the Confederate authorities had been conferred with. 

The following is a copy of the papers carried by the com- 
missioners. ("Records War of Rebellion," p. 178, No. 100): 

State of North Caholina, 

Executive Department, 
Raleigh, April 12, 1865. 

General W. T. Sherman, Commanding U. S. Forces: 

Sir :— Understanding that your army is advancing on this capital, I 
have to request, under proper safe conduct, a personal interview at such 
time as may be agreeable to you, for the purpose of conferring upon the 
subject of a suspension of hostilities, with a view to further communica- 
tion with the authorities of the United States touching the final termi- 
nation of the existing war. IE you concur in the propriety of such a 
proceeding I shall be obliged for an early reply. 

With high respect, your obedient servant, 

Z. B. Vance. 

Headquarters Military Division op the Mississippi — In the Field, 

Gulley's Station, N. C, April 12, 1865. 

His Excellency, Z. B. Vance, Governor of North Carolina: 

Sir: — I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communi- 
cation of this date, and inclose you a safeguard for yourself and any 
member of the State government that chooses to remain in Raleigh. I 
would gladly have enabled you to meet me here, but some interruption 
occurred to the train by the orders of General Johnston after I had 
passed within the lines of my cavalry advance, but as it came out of 
Raleigh in good faith it shall return in good faith, and will in no measure 
be claimed by us. I doubt if hostilities can be suspended as between 
the army of the Confederate Government and the one I command, but I 
will aid you all in my power to contribute to the end you aim to reach, 
the termination of the existing war. 

I am truly, your obedient servant, 

W. T. Sherman, 

Major- General. 

Headquarters Military Division op the Mississippi — In the Field, 

Gulley's Station, N. C, April 12, 1865. 

All officers and soldiers of this army are commanded to respect and 
protect the Governor of North Carolina and the officers and servants of 
the State government, the Mayor and civil authorities of Raleigh, pro- 

Organization of Troops. 59 

vided no hostile act is committed against the oflBcers and men of this 
army between this and the city. 

W. T. Sherman, 
Major-Oeneral Commanding. 

The train of cars now here in charge of Colonel James G. Burr of the 

stafi' of Governor Vance can pass to and from Raleigh without let or 

hindrance until further orders. All guards and pickets will see that it 

is not interfered with or destroyed. 

W. T. Sheeman, 

Major-Oeneral Commanding. 

The Governor's staff was now as follows: The writer, As- 
sistant Adjutant-Greneral, Colonel D. D. Ferrebee, Lieutenant 
Julius Juthrie, C. S. Navy, and Captain James A. Bryan, Ord- 
nance Officer Lane's Brigade, who was in Raleigh at the time of 
the evacuation of Richmond. 


We left Hillsboro on Saturday morning, going to Haw River, 
whence Governor Vance went by train to Greensboro, to meet 
President Davis, but he had left before his arrival. The staff 
spent the night with Mr. Swepson. Water-courses were much 
swollen by recent rains, and we had to swim several creeks en 
route to Haw River — the river was very high. Planks were 
laid across the railroad bridge, teams were unhitched and the 
wagons and cannon pulled over by hand. The teams were either 
led over or swam through the river. 

Next day we went to Company Shops (now Burlington), and 
received a telegram from the Governor to come on to Greens- 
boro. The news of Lee's surrender seems to have been kept 
from Johnston's army. As we passed through the camps near 
Greensboro that evening about dark I heard a soldier calling to 
a comrade and telling him that it was certainly so, "for he 
had seen one of Lee's men in Greensboro that day who had his 
parole." It had been more than a week since the surrender, 
and it is remarkable how it could have been kept from being 
known to the whole army. 

60 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 


At Greensboro there were large quantities of cloth and other 
supplies belonging to the State. These had been guarded by 
the Home Guard, but on the coming of Johnston's army Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel A. C. McAlister, Forty-sixth North Carolina 
Troops of Lee's army, who was in Greensboro with a portion of 
his regiment, was assigned to the duty. Some of Wheeler's 
Cavalry determined to take the cloth, and organized a crowd of 
about fifty for the purpose. They were warned not to go, and 
told' with whom they had to deal, but on they came. When 
they were within one hundred yards of Colonel McAlister's 
division the front rank began to fire over their heads, hoping 
thus to stop them, but still they came on. He then commanded: 
"Men, lower your pieces. Fire!" Three were unhorsed, and so 
badly wounded that they died. The others precipitately left 
the field, and there was no further trouble with the State's 

The North Carolina officers about Greensboro of Lee's and 
Johnston's armies besought Governor Vance to have these sup- 
plies issued or to let the soldiers take what they wanted, as "the 
end had come." He was willing for each one to have what was 
necessary for his personal use, but said " it was the State's prop- 
erty, and he had no right to destroy it." 

As we' came from Hillsboro, about eight miles out we over- 
took two of Wheeler's Cavalry with one horse to a buggy, 
another tied to this one, while one of the men was eopiing from 
a house leading another, followed by a woman and half a dozen 
children, begging him to leave the horse. These were the family 
of a soldier in Lee's army, the horse the only work animal they 
had. The Governor met him at the road and told him if he did 
not give up that horse he would "arrest him and go to General 
Johnston's headquarters to see that he was shot as a horse thief." 
The horse was released. The thanks and rejoicing of the mother 
and family was a touching scene. The buggy was loaded with 
what had been plundered from citizens. This straggling, plun- 
dering horde, known as " Wheeler's Cavalry," seemed to be an 

Organization of Troops. 61 

organization to itself, and it is to be regretted that the brave 
men who were with the General at the front have been so often 
confounded with this crowd. To us, who had served with Jeb 
Stuart, it was a new "arm of the service"; we had seen noth- 
ing like it, although we had been almost to Harrisburg, Penn., 
in our campaign. The nearest approach was the stragglers on 
the Gettysburg campaign, whom General Stuart designated as 
" Company Q," and disbanded by general orders, referring to 
them as a " disgraceful organization." 


From Greensboro the Governor telegraphed President Davis 
for a conference. I accompanied him to Charlotte, but was not 
present at the conference, which was held in Mr. Thomas W. 
Dewey's parlor (now the Observer building). The proceedings 
were about as follows: After a general conversation on the sit- 
uation. Governor Vance said: " Mr. President, I have come to see 
what you wish me to do." The President replied in substance 
that "it was a time for every man to stand to his post and do 
his duty." After a short silence. General J. C. Breckinridge, 
Secretary of War (the Cabinet being present), said: "Mr. Presi- 
dent, I do not think you have answered the Governor's ques- 
tion." Mr. Davis replied rather tartly: "Well, what would you 
tell him to do?" General Breckinridge said: "The end is evi- 
dently near, and .he should make the best terms he can for his 
people and his State." Mr. Davis replied: "You would?" 


Generals Johnston and Sherman had agreed upon terms to 
close the war, which were submitted to their respective govern- 
ments for approval. A truce or armistice was declared until the 
decisions of the governments were known. The day I was 
in Charlotte, James H. Orr and some one else went towards Lin- 
colnton to carry General Stoneman notice of the armistice. That 
day the bridge at Rozzelle's ferry was burned. General E. D. 
Johnston, who was in the peach orchard on the Mecklenburg 

62 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

side, with a few others in line, had a silver dollar in tis breast- 
pocket badly dented by a ball fired by Stoneman's men from the 
Gaston side of the river. 

There was a large quantity of leather and rubber belting and 
some cloth in a house standing about where Mr. Clinard's store 
now is. That afternoon some of the citizens broke the store 
open and helped themselves to the goods — as they thought the 
Confederacy was dead, they administered on its effects. 


At 12 o'clock that night we went in a box-car to Salisbury 
and "put up" at the hotel kept by Dr. ^Y. H. Howerton. He 
declined to take Confederate money in payment for breakfast 
and lodging. Governor Vance had not a cent of specie. I had 
seven dollars. When I left Hillsboro my father had fifteen sil- 
ver dollars belonging to my brother James (who was with Lee), 
and he gave me seven of it. He did not have a cent of specie of his 
own. At that time he was a Confederate States Senator. Neither 
he nor Governor Vance had favored secession in the beginning, 
but when they gave their adhesion to the Southern cause they 
nobly stood by it. The currency with which the nation paid its 
soldiers they considered good enough for them, and there is no 
stronger proof of faithfulness to duty assumed in our history 
than this incident affords. Dr. Howerton declined to receive 
the silver, but said it ,was useless to take Confederate money, 
and simply marked our names paid. I think General Wade 
Hampton was also present, and, like the Governor, had nothing 
but Confederate money. Dr. Howerton did the same for him. 

After breakfast we went to the depot and down to the old 
round-house. While in it we heard firing at the depot, first an 
occasional shot, then vollies. We thought Sherman had advanced 
and that we were prisoners. Some one had fired the boxes of 
ammunition piled on the depot platform. 


On the return to Greensboro, the Confederacy being at an end, 
Governor Vance was desirous to communicate with General Sher- 

Organization of Troops. 63 

man. He went with Generals Johnston and Breckinridge and 
Hon. J. H. Reagan to Hampton's outpost, near Strayhorn's (now 
University Station). Here the others held several consultations, 
to none of which was the Governor invited. He took offense 
at this treatment and the manner of his transportation back to 
Greensboro. I bore several letters between him and General 
Johnston on the subject. All was satisfactorily adjusted. 

While at General Hampton's outpost news came of Lincoln's 
assassination, and Governor Vance abandoned his trip to Raleigh. 
During the armistice several hundred of General Johnston's 
soldiers came to Governor Vance's headquarters (the brick office 
opposite the court-house — Messrs. Scott's law office) and called 
on him and General J. C. Brown, of Tennessee, for speeches. 
They responded on the close of the war on the basis laid down 
by Generals Johnston and Sherman. While in Greensboro Gov- 
ernor Vance was entertained by his warm personal friend and 
colleague in the United States Congress, Hon. John A. Gilmer. 
On going into Governor Vance's room on Sunday morning, he 
informed me that we were prisoners; that the Yankees had occu- 
pied the town the night before. It was concluded that flight 
was impossible, even if advisable; that I should go up town and 
surrender, and tell them that he was ready to do so. On going 
to the court-house, I fovind that the Yankees, who had come by 
train from Danville, had returned. 

Sherman's affront to halleck. 

President Johnson had rejected the Johnston-Sherman plan 
to close the war. Stanton, as Secretary of War, and General 
Halleck, as Commander-in-Chief, had ordered Generals Sheridan 
and Wright "to pay no attention to General Sherman's armis- 
tice," but to push into North Carolina and capture President 
Davis. The subsequent history of this order, and how General 
Sherman publicly affronted General Halleck in Richmond and 
Stanton at the grand review in Washington, makes an interesting 
chapter of history, but I cannot spare space for it in this con- 
nection. It can be gotten from the official "Records of the Re- 

64 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

bellion," No. 100. General Johnston Dotified General Sherman 
of the presence of these troops. He complained to General 
Grant, and they were withdrawn. 

Johnston's surrender. 

Governor Vance went that day half way to Danville by rail 
to meet Governor Smith (Extra Billy) for consultation. They 
held this to themselves, and I do not know the trend of 
the conversation, but it was concluded that nothing could be 
done. Generals Johnston and Sherman having on April 26th 
agreed upon terms for the surrender of Johnston's army similar to 
those between Lee and Grant, Brigadier-General Hartranft, of 
Pennsylvania, came to Greensboro to arrange and accept the 
paroles. He had no orders as to the ofBcers of the State govern- 
ment. General Schofield, who had been assigned to this depart- 
ment, came to Greensboro and took quarters at Governor More- 
head's. I bore a message from Governor Vance to him, request- 
ing an interview. It was a bright moonlight night; the sentinel 
was stationed in the front walk, about one hundred yards from 
the house; when I was fifty steps from him, bringing his gun 
"to ready," he called out: "Halt; who goes there?" I replied: 
" Friend, without the countersign." He answered back, " Who? " 
I repeated my reply, with the addition, " I have a message from 
Governor Vance to General Schofield." He called the corporal 
of the guard, I advanced, and on explaining my errand to him, 
I was conducted into the house. General Schofield soon came 
in, and on reading the paper, remarked : " Tell the Governor I 
will be happy to receive him at his convenience," I named 8 :30 
o'clock for our return. 

Mr. Gilmer and I think Major A. M. McPheeters, the Gov- 
ernor's Private Secretary, accompanied us. Governor Morehead 
also came iu the room. After a little introductory talk, the 
Governor told General Schofield that he desired to talk with 
him about matters in the State, and particularly about his (the 
mountain) section of it. He thought there would be much 
trouble and turmoil if the troops kept there for police duty 

Organization op Troops. 65 

should be those who had enlisted in the United States service 
from that section; it would be best to send regulars and not vol- 
unteers. General Stoneman thanked him for the suggestion, 
and said he would consider it. One of the cavalry regiments of 
the United States army was sent there. It was the regiment to 
which Captains Hayes and Ward belonged. After discussion as 
to matters belonging to the State for some time, the Governor 
asked him what he would do with him. He replied he had no 
orders as to him or any civil officer. The Governor replied that 
he would in a day or two join his wife at Statesville, and if 
wanted he would be found there. 


The Governor asked General Schofield to forward to Presi- 
dent Johnson a communication asking for a permit to send a 
commission to Washington to arrange with the Federal authori- 
ties as to the affairs of the State. Governor Graham was sum- 
moned by telegraph from Hillsboro. He prepared a paper to 
be sent to President Johnson, asking that he and Hons. John A. 
Gilmer and Bedford Brown be sent a permit to visit Washing- 
ton. Mr. Brown was summoned from his home in Caswell 
county, and a conference was held as to the mission. President 
Johnson refused to receive the commission or send a permit, as 
requested; but a short time afterwards summoned Governor 
Holden, whom he appointed Provisional Governor. Governor 
Holden had done more to promote secession than any man in 
the State. A day or two aftewards, at about 9 o'clock. Governor 
'Vance boarded the train for Salisbury and Statesville, and at 
10:30 I did likewise for Hillsboro, being, as I claim, the last 
man in North Carolina to leave the Confederacy. A few weeks 
afterwar4s Governor Vance was arrested at Statesville and con- 
fined for several weeks, with other Southern Governors, in the 

old Capitol at Washington. 

W. A. Graham. 
Machpblah, N. C, 

April 26, 1900. 

Regimental Histories. 


1. D. H. Hill, Colonel. 

2. James H. Lane, Major. 

3. J. B. Starr, Lieut.-Colonel. 

4. Charles B. Cook, 2d Lieut., Co. H. 
6. E. J. Hale, Private, Co. H. 

6. Thomas Capehart, 23 Lieut., Co. M. 

7. J. M. Sims, Private, Co. C. 

£. W. B. Taylor, Corporal, Co. C. 

9. E. F. Hoke, Major. (Picture in 21st 

10. W. G. Lewis, 2d Lieut., Co. A. (Pic- 

ture in 43d Regiment.) 

11. P. M. Parker, 2d Lieut., Co. I. (Pic- 

ture in 30th Regiment.) 

12. F. W. Bird, 2d Lieut., Co. L. (Picture 

in nth Regiment.) 




"First at Bethel; last at Appomattox!" is an epigram which 
embodies the spirit of all the serious acts of North Carolina. 

She has not exhibited those boastful qualities which seem to 
characterize the peoples of new countries. She had passed her 
century before she discovered that it was the making, not the 
■writing, of history which chiefly distinguished her, and recorded 
the fact in her recently adopted motto. It may be said of her 
as the Duke of York said of Richard's noble father : 

"In peace, was never gentle lamb more mild; 
In war, was never lion raged more fierce." 

When we consider these peculiarities of our mother State, 
assimilating her more nearly than her sisters to old-world com- 
munities, with their repose and reserved strength, we will be 
prepared to understand the secret of the surprises which she gave 
to her neighbors. It will also explain why so few general offi- 
cers were accorded to her at first, and so grudgingly, and how it 
came about, before the war had ended, that the North Carolina 
contingent in the Army of Northern Virginia were masters of 
the situation. Indeed, no thoughtful soldier of that army, ob- 
serving the course of events in the last year or two of ithe war, 
could hesitate to believe that if it had lasted a year longer the 
leadership of the army, saving Lee himself, would have been 
supplied by North Carolinians — that is to say, by those who 
contributed the greater number of soldiers as well as the greater 

70 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

losses in battle. The turning of the tide at Gettysburg, so dis- 
heartening to the South, seemed only to inspire the troops of our 
glorious State with greater fortitude as they entered upon the 
losing battle which Grant's new methods imposed in the death 
grapple of 1864 and 1865. 

Bearing these things in mind, we may review with composure 
the attitude of North Carolina before the outbreak of hostilities, 
and feel the thrill of compensated pride at the celerity and pon- 
derousness of her blows afterwards — whether delivered by the 
First Regiment, setting the pace at Bethel Church, or by any of 
its successors. The contrast in her two moods constitutes one of 
the sublimest episodes of history. 

The General Assembly of North Carolina met on the 19th of 
November, 1860. South Carolina passed her ordinance of seces- 
sion on the 20th of December. Mississippi followed on the 9th 
of January, 1861; Florida, on the 10th; Alabama, on the 11th; 
Georgia, on the 19th; Louisiana, on the 26th; and Texas, on the 
1st of February. Amid the profound agitation which these 
events produced, North Carolina preserved her equanimity as a 
State, though her people were divided. Those who favored join- 
ing the newly formed Confederacy advocated the calling of a 
convention. Those who opposed secession opposed the calling 
of a convention. There were, however, a large number who 
opposed secession as inexpedient, who nevertheless favored the 
calling of a convention. Such a body, it was thought, could 
observe the course of events, and be ready for action if circum- 
stances required. 

On the 30th of January the General Assembly passed a bill 
for an election to determine the question of calling a convention 
and at the same time for choosing members of the convention if 
called. The 28th of February was named as the day for the 
election. The call of the convention was rejected by a narrow 
majority, some seven hundred and fifty; but the number of dele- 
gates chosen who were known as "unionists" — that is, wh& 
thought secession inexpedient unless coercion of the seceded States 
were attempted — was eighty-two; while the number of those 

The Bethel Regiment. 71 

who were known as " secessionists " — that is, those who favored 
immediate action — was thirty-eight. 


On the 12th of April hostilities began in Charleston harbor. 
On the 15th, Mr. Lincoln issued his proclamation for coercion. 
On the 17th, Governor Ellis issued his patriotic rejoinder, con- 
vening the General Assembly in "special session" on the 1st of 
May. On the 18th of April the leading organ of the majority 
contained an editorial which voiced their sentiments, as these 
were affected by such a stupendous change in their affairs, and 
which it will be enlightening to quote as follows: 

" It is needless to remind our readers how earnestly and hon- 
estly we have labored to preserve our once great and glorious 
and beneficent Union. In its existence we have believed were 
involved that inappreciable blessing, peace; that sound form of 
liberty and law inaugurated by the Constitution of the United 
States; and the security, nay, even the existence, of that domes- 
tic iustitution out of which have arisen all our national troubles. 
In the new aspect of affairs, we see no reason to change any 
opinion that we have expressed, that the difficulty ought to have 
been peaceably settled, and would have been if good men had 
been influential. We believe now, as heretofore, that by the 
exercise of that patience which the immense issues at stake de- 
manded, there would have been a peaceful settlement. We 
believe now, as heretofore, that a fratricidal war for such a cause 
is a wrong of which we would not be guilty for a thousand 
worlds. But with all these opinions unchanged, there is a change 
in the condition of affairs — a change with which neither we nor 
the people of North Carolina have had aught to do — over which 
they have had no control, but which of necessity will shape their 
action. The President's proclamation is "the last feather that 
breaks the camel's back." It shows that the professions of peace 
were a delusion and a cheat, or, if ever really entertained, that 
peaceful intentions have been abandoned. War is to be prose- 
cuted against the South by means of the seventy-five thousand 

72 iNOETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

men called for; and North Carolina has been officially required 
to furnish a quota of the seventy-five thousand. Will she do 
it? Ought she to do it? No, no! Not a man can leave her 
borders upon such an errand who has not made up his mind to 
war upon his own home and all that he holds dear in that home. 
For ourselves, we are Southern men and North Carolinians, and 
at war with those who are at war with the South and North 
Carolina. With such feelings we attended the large and almost 
impromptu meeting of Tuesday last, and one of us was unex- 
pectedly called upon to take a part in that meeting. Its calm 
and dignified determinations met his full concurrence, though it 
was the saddest public duty he was ever called upon to perform. 
The future seems to us full only of evil. A civil war, in which 
it will be hard to say whether victor or vanquished is the greater 
sufferer. A civil war, whose end no man can see, but full every 
day of its long and sad years of woe, woe, woe. The impover- 
ished, the down-trodden, the widow and the orphan, will here- 
after heap bitter imprecations upon the bad men who have brought 
these terrible evils of desolation and death upon a great and 
prosperous and happy people. Thank God! that we can say we 
have labored for peace, and have had no wish but to avert the 
dire calamities in a way honorable to both sections." 

History — history which the government is preserving in im- 
perishable records — has shown with what unequaled fidelity the 
people in whose behalf these words were written redeemed their 
new obligations. It was in harmony with these noble character- 
istics that North Carolina should have been (with exception of her 
daughter, Tennessee) the last State to secede from the Union, and, 
as the world now knows, the foremost, once having taken the fate- 
ful step, in all that was required to make secession good — in 
harmony with her conservative and peace-loving disposition, 
once the battle was joined, that she poured out her blood and 
treasure in greater volume than any of her sisters; that, possess- 
ing but one-tenth of the white population of the seceded States, 
she contributed one-fifth of their armies; and that she mustered 
at Appomattox a greater number of arms-bearing men than all 

The Bethel Regiment. 73 

others of them. That she should also have supplied the chief 
portion "of the Confederacy's troops engaged in the first pitched 
battle of the war may not be attributed to accident, but rather 
to the complete condition in which she sent her first troops across 
the Virginian border, her First Regiment of Volunteers. For 
this reason they were sent to Yorktown, which was then the 
post of danger. 

The hastily assembled meeting referred to in the editorial 
quoted was a public meeting held on Tuesday, the 16th of April, 
the day on which Mr. Lincoln's proclamation was received in the 
most of the towns of the State. Its resolutions called for the 
taking of "all proper steps to maintain, secure and defend the 
rights of North Carolina as one of the Southern States"; request- 
ing the Governor to "forthwith convene the General Assembly, 
with a view to legislative action in this crisis"; and pledging 
their support and adherence " to the Governor and authorities of 
the State in such manner as may be deemed necessary to be 
taken to assert our rights and defend our soil." 

Similar meetings were held and similar resolutions adopted in 
all the towns and counties as soon as news of the proclamation 
came to hand. 

The remarkable feature of this movement was that it was not 
concerted; yet it was simultaneous, and the voice of the people 
throughout the length and breadth of the State was as that of 
one man. With sublime confidence in themselves, they had 
declared for peace in the face of unprecedented clamor; but, with 
no less significance, they made it known that, if the time of 
action should come, they would not be behind the foremost. 
Thus the State which had declared for the Union, two to one, on 
the 28th of February, became an armed camp, marshaled for 
■resistence to the Union, on the 17th of April, less than fifty days. 


It was under such circumstances that the troops which formed 
the First Regiment volunteered. They were the cream of the 
State's uniformed militia, and they included in their ranks, when 

74 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

filled and ready for leaving home, probably the highest average 
order of men ever mustered for war.* 

Local industries in North Carolina at that day were in a com- 
paratively high state of development. These companies were 
completely equipped in an incredibly short time. More than 
half their members were either new, or were literary and profes- 
sional men who had enrolled themselves in them as a matter of local 
pride.f The State supplied arms, but all other equipments — uni- 
forms, tents, knapsacks, haversacks, canteens, and so forth — were 
required to be supplied by the volunteers or their organizations. 
The large harness and other leather manufactories, carriage fac- 
tories and metal working establishments which were a marked 
feature of our dispersed industrial development before the war, 
each locality taking care of its own volunteers, supplied a much 
more efficient means for meeting such an emergency than the 
present system of concentration which the adverse result of the 
war introduced. We have recently witnessed the deplorable 
delay with which the volunteers in the late Spanish war were 
equipped, notwithstanding the unlimited resources of the reunited 
Republic, with its more than doubled population and its concen- 
trated wealth. Contrast with this the record of the North Caro- 
lina of 1861, as follows: 

The companies of the First Regiment volunteered on the 
17th of April, 1861; they were formed into a regiment at 
the State capital by successive orders from the Adjutant- 
General's office, issued on April 19th, May 9th, May 12th and 
May 16th; three of them (the two Fayetteville companies and 
the Lincoln company) were in Richmond on the 18th of May, 
the other seven arriving on the 21st; and they had fought and 
won the first battle of the war by the 10th of June! 

*The Charlotte Democrat of May 1, isiil, aaid: "This regiment is said to be the finest 
looking body of men ever assembled in the State." 

tTheYorktown correspondent of the above paper, writing on May 27th of the extra- 
ordmary character of the rank and file of the First Regiment, said that among the pri- 
vates were " two editors and a number of lawyers and doctors." The chaplain too the 
Kev. Mr. Yates (smce a. distinguished Doctor of Divinity), was taken from the ranks of 
Company B, one of the Charlotte companies. 

The Bethel Eegiment. 75 


Military men know that this astonishing result could not have 
been accomplished if completeness of equipment and organiza- 
tion had been sacrificed to celerity of movement. It is believed 
that no other regiment, then or afterwards, was set out in the 
field in such style as the First North Carolina Volunteers when 
they were mustered on the plain of Yorktown in the last week of 

Such was the judgment, also, of impartial critics. The 
Petersburg (Virginia) Express of Monday, May 20, 1861, con- 
tained the following : 

"Three companies of the First Regiment of North Carolina 
Volunteers — the Fayetteville Independent Infantry, Captain 
Huske; the Fayetteville Light Infantry, Captain Starr, both 
from Fayetteville, and the Southern Stars, Captain Hoke, from 
Lincoln county — arrived in this city by a . special train from 
Raleigh at 7 : 30 o'clock on Saturday evening. Each company 
had its full complement of one hundred and nine men, thor- 
oughly armed and in the best spirits. If we may form an opin- 
ion of the whole regiment by the material and appearance of the 
above three companies, we should unhesitatingly pronounce it to 
be one of the finest in the world. North Carolina marshals her 
bravest and her best for the coming contest, and sends to Vir- 
ginia men who will uphold and transmit without blemish to 
posterity the honorable and enviable glory and fame of their 
patriotic sires. Drilled to perfection and armed to the full — 
with brave hearts to lead and brave hearts to follow — they will 
do their duty, and that nobly." 

The same paper of Wednesday, May 22d, said : 

"The remainder of the First Regiment of North Carolina 
Volunteers, numbering seven companies and over seven hundred 

76 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

must say that this is the best equipped regiment which has 
yet made its route through our city. Everything seems to have 
been provided for them that a soldier could desire — arms, ac- 
coutrements, knapsacks, haversacks, canteens — in fact, nothing is 

Said the Richmond Examiner ot Thursday, May 23, 1861: = 

" Without waiting for the form of a legal secession, the State 
of North Carolina commenced sending her gallant sons to join 
those who were already in the tented field. On Wednesday 
morning the rest of the regiment (of which the first installment 
arrived on Sunday*), amounting to seven hundred, reached 
this city by the southern road at one o'clock. They were soon 
formed into line and marched through the city, in splendid style, 
to the airs of a fine band. Those who saw their close columns 
and steady march as they moved down Main street, in perfect 
order, their polished muskets glistening in the moonlight, with 
Done of the usual attendants of loafers and negroes crowding 
upon the ranks, describe the scene .as almost spectral in its ap- 
pearance, so regular and orderly were its movements." 

The value of these voluntary testimonials from the newspapers 
of the capital State will be apparent when it is remembered that 
nearly all the troops which had come to Virginia from the origi- 
nal Confederate States passed over the same Petersburg and 
Richmond highway. The fact that the troops of those States 
had been organized and drilled for at least six months, and de- 
sired war, accentuates the achievement of North Carolina, which 
dealt with men who were private citizens a month before, and 
who, for the most part, were opposed to war: 

Nor was expert testimony lacking to the same effect. Dr. 
Battle, of the University, reports that General Gabriel J. 
Rains, when he visited the First Regiment on the Yorktown 
Peninsula, declared that it was "the best regiment he had ever 
seen." (General Rains was graduated from the United States 

^Saturday night. 

The Bethel Regiment. 77 

Military Academy in 1827, and from that time until the breaking 
out of the war served with distinction in the regular aripy. At 
the time of his visit he was a general officer of the Confederacy 
and in command of the First Division of Magruder's Peninsula 


By reference to the Adjutant-General's orders in the appen- 
dix to this article it will be seen that several changes were made 
in the companies assigned to the First Regiment. When com- 
plete and ready for departure for Virginia its organization was 
as follows: 

Daniel H. Hill, Colonel. 

Charles C. Lee, Lieutenant-Colonel. 

James H. Lane, Major. 

J. M. POTEAT, Adjutant. 

John Henry Wayt, Commissary. 

Dr. Peter E. Hines, Surgeon. 

Dr. Joseph H. Baker, Assistant Surgeon. 

Dr. John G. Hardy, Assistant Surgeon. 

Rev. Edwin A. Yates, Chaplain. 

Company A — Edgecombe Guards — Captain, John L. Bridg- 
ers; First Lieutenant, Whitmel P. Lloyd; Second Lieutenant, 
William S. Long; Junior Second Lieutenant, W. G. Lewis. 

Company B — Hornet's Nest Rifles — Captain, Lewis S. Wil- 
liams; First Lieutenant, William A. Owens; Second Lieuten- 
ant, William P. Hill; Junior Second Lieutenant, Thomas D. 

Company C — Charlotte Grays — Captain, E. A. Ross; First 
Lieutenant, E. B. Cohen ; Second Lieutenant, Thomas B. Trot- 
ter; Junior Second Lieutenant, C. W. Alexander. 

Company D — Orange Light Infantry — Captain, Richard J. 
Ashe; First Lieutenant, James R. Jennings; Second Lieutenant, 
Richard B. Saunders; Junior Second Lieutenant, Richardson 

Company E — Buncombe Miflemen — Captain, William Wallis 

78 NoETH Carolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

McDowell; First Lieutenant, Washington Morrison Hardy; 
Second Lieutenant, George Henry Gregory; Junior Second Lieu- 
tenant, James Alfred Patton. 

Company F — LaFayette Light Infantry — Captain, Joseph B. 
Starr; First Lieutenant, Frank N. Koberts; Second Lieutenant, 
John A. Pemberton; Junior Second Lieutenant, George Sloan. 

Company G — Bu7'ke Rifles — Captain, Clark Moulton Avery; 
First Lieutenant, Calvin S. Brown; Second Lieutenant, John 
A. Dickson; Junior Second Lieutenant, James C. S. McDowell. 

Company H — Fayetteville Indepmident Light Infantry — Cap- 
tain, Wright Huske; First Lieutenant, Benjamin Robinson 
Huske; Second Lieutenant, Charles BettsCook; Junior Second 
Lieutenant, Hector McKethan. 

Company I — Enfield Blues — Captain, D. B. Bell; First Lieu- 
tenant, M. T. Whitaker; Second Lieutenant, F. M. Parker; 
Junior Second Lieutenant, Cary W. Whitaker. 

Company K — Southern Stars — Captain, William J. Hoke; 
First Lieutenant, Wallace M. Reinhardt; Second Lieutenant, 
Robert F. Hoke; Junior Second Lieutenant, Ed. E. Sumner. 

The field officers were the three ranking officers of the North 
Carolina Military Institute at Charlotte, Colonel Hill, known 
by his old army title of Major, being the commandant. They 
were all men of distinction in their profession. 

Hill had been graduated from West Point in 1842; had par- 
ticipated in nearly every important engagement in the Mexican 
war; and had won the brevet of captain at Contreras and Cheru- 
busco, and of major at Chapultepec. He resigned from the 
army in 1849 to become Professor of Mathematics at Washing- 
ton College, Virginia. In 1854 he became a professor in David- 
son College, and, in 1859, commandant and manager of the 
Military Institute at Charlotte. At the outbreak of the war he 
was made commandant of the camp of instruction at Raleigh. 

Lee was graduated high in his class at West Point in 1856; 
became Second Lieutenant of Ordnance in the army; resigned 
his commission in 1859, and became a professor at the Charlotte 

The Bethel Regiment. 79 

Military Institute. He was made major and second in command 
at the camp of instruction at Raleigh. 

Lane was one of the two "star graduates" of his class at the 
Virginia Military Institute, and a graduate of the University of 
Virginia. He became Assistant Professor of Mathematics and 
Tactics at the Virginia Military Institute; later, professor of 
those departments at the Florida State Seminary; and then Pro- 
fessor of Natural Philosophy in the Charlotte Military Institute. 
He was made drill-master and adjutant of the camp of instruc- 
tion at Raleigh. 


The regiment was immediately sent to the front, and, as we 
have seen, reached Richmond in two detachments — the first, 
composed of the two Fayetteville companies and the Lincoln 
company, under Colonel Hill, arriving there on Saturday night, 
the 18th of May; and the second, composed of the remainder of 
the regiment, Under Lieutenant-Colonel Lee, arriving on Tues- 
day night, the 21st. Thus, as the Richmond Examiner said. 
North Carolina had patriotically anticipated the legal act of 
secession, and she had actually put nearly four hundred of her 
troops on Virginia soil before its occurrence. No other State, it 
is believed, did as much. 

The regiment went into camp at Howard's Grove, and remained 
at Richmond until the Friday following. May 24th. 

As North Carolina was still technically in the Union, and 
Virginia, whose ordinance of secession was passed on the 17th 
of May, did not transfer her military establishment to the Con- 
federacy until June 7th, our North Carolina troops on Virginia 
soil were for some days in the position of allies of Virginia. As 
such they were under the supreme command of General Robert 
E. Lee, Commander-in-Chief of the Virginia forces. General 
Lee had but three weeks before (April 20th) resigned his posi- 
tion in the United States Army as Lieutenant-Colonel of Albert 
Sidney Johnston's Second Regiment of Cavalry. His appear- 
ance at this time was strikingly different from that in which he 

80 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

subsequently became familiar to the Army of Northern Virginia. 
His hair was close cropped, his complexion fresh and ruddy, his 
face smooth-shaven, except for a black, military-looking mus- 
tache. His movement was quicker; his figure — graceful, as can- 
not be forgotten, and erect to the last — more lithe. He was, 
altogether, a phenomenally handsome man, the model of a sol- 
dier. 'In a year's time he looked ten years older. 


Of the four lines* by which General Scott had planned the 
invasion of Virginia — from Washington; from Fortress Mon- 
roe; by the Cumberland Valley; and from Ohio, by the Kana- 
wha, into Western Virginia — that from Fortress Monroe became 
the natural one, with the transfer of the Capital of the Confed- 
eracy from Montgomery to Richmond. Except that the first 
mentioned served the double purpose of protecting the Federal 
Capital, the Fortress Monroe line would undoubtedly have claimed 
his chief attention. The splendid base which that great military 
work, one of the largest in the world, supplied, and the ideal 
route which the Yorktown Peninsula presented for his marching 
troops, with the broad waters of the James and the York Rivei's 
open to his navy on either flank, were considerations which must 
otherwise have fixed his choice. It is probable that the situation 
at the moment of the First Regiment's arrival in Richmond 
would have destined them to Northern Virginia; but circumstances 
were rapidly shifting the theatre of operations. 

After the evacuation of the Gosport Navy Yard by the Fed- 
eral authorities on the 21st of April, Richmond was thrown into 
alarm by the reports of the approach of the Federal gun-boat 
"Pawnee'' up the James. On the 6th of May Federal vessels 
chased steamers to within twelve miles of Gloucester Point, on 
the York River, opposite Yorktown, and fired upon them. On 
May 7th the special agent of the Confederate Government 
reported to the Secretary of War (L. P. Walker), from Rich- 
mond, that intelligent and distinguished men in Richmond 

*Major Jed Hotchkiss, in Confederate Military History, Vol. Ill, page 43. 

The Bethel Regiment. 81 

" believe Virginia on the very brink of being carried back, and 
say no man but President Davis can save her. * * * There 
is disappointment that he does not assume entire direction of 
affairs here. * * * General Lee has ordered Louisiana 
troops to Harper's Ferry. * * * "phe South Carolina troops 
refuse to move unless under orders from Montgomery."* On the 
11th of May, Rev. Dr. W. N. Pendleton (afterwards brigadier- 
general of artillery), who had been a classmate of President 
Davis at West Point, wrote to the President at Montgomery as 
follows: "As you value our great cause, hasten on to Rich- 
mond. Lincoln and Scott are, if I mistake not, covering by 
other demonstrations the great movement upon Richmond. Sup- 
pose they should send suddenly up the York River, as they can, 
an army of thirty thousand or more; there are no means at hand 
to repel them, and if their policy shown in Maryland gets footing 
here, it will be a severe, if not a fatal, blow. Hasten, I pray you, 
to avert it. - The very fact of yonr presence will almost answer. 
Hasten, then, I entreat you; don't lose a day." On the 18th of 
May (the day after Virginia's secession) the United States ship 
"Monticello" fired on the Virginia battery at Seweli's Point, 
and again on the 21st. On the 22d, Majpr-General Benjamin F. 
Butler, United States Army, was transferred from the Depart- 
ment of Annapolis and assigned to' the command of the Depart- 
of Virginia, with headquarters at Fortress Monroe; a^nd nine 
additional infantry regiments were sent there. On the 23d, a 
Federal regiment made a demonstration against Hampton, three 
miles from Fortress Monroe. At Hampton and other points in 
the Peninsula country there was considerable disaffection to the 

It was under these circumstances that the destination of the 
First North Carolina Volunteers, the crack regiment of the day, 
was decided. They were ordered to Yorktown, the " post of 
danger and of honor,"t as the papers of the day described it. 
Breaking camp at Richmond on the 24th of May, they proceeded 

♦Confederate Military History, Vol. Ill, page 128. 
tFayetteville Observer, May 27, 1861. 


82 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

by rail to West Point, ou the York River, and by^steam-boat 
(tlie " Logan ") the rest of the way, landing at Yorktown the 
same afternoon. Upon the boat was Colonel John B. Magruder, 
of the Provisional Army of Virginia, lately a distinguished artil- 
lery major of the United States Army, who had just been 
assigned (May 21st) to the command of the Department of the 
Peninsula, including the York and James Rivers. 

Between the time of the regiment's arrival at Yorktown and 
the 6th of June it was kept incessantly at work, drilling and in- 
trenching. While engaged in the latter it was interesting to 
these new disciples of Mars to trace the outline of Cornwallis's 
works erected in defense against 'their forefathers four score years 
before. Sometimes their spades and picks would renew, some- 
times demolish, those ancient war marks, and occasionally they 
would unearth a souvenir of battle. 

A company of mounted men, called the Old Dominion Dra- 
goons, appeared shortly after the regiment's arrival, having their 
rendezvous at Yorktown; though doing picket duty between 
Yorktown and the enemy's posts at Hampton (three miles from 
Fortress Monroe) and Newport News, some twenty-one miles 
away. At Newport News, General Butler had caused a very 
strong intrenched camp to be established, garrisoning it with 
several regiments, among them the Seventh New York, the First 
Vermopt and the Fourth Massachusetts, together with a portion 
of the Second United States Artillery. On the 28th of May two 
more companies of Virginia cavalry were ordered to Yorktown, 
and Cabell's Battery of light artillery was transferred thither 
from Gloucester Point. On the 10th of June the Louisiana 
Zouaves (the First Louisiana Battalion), under Lieutenant- 
Colonel Coppens, were ordered from Richmond to Yorktown. 
At the same time a number of companies of Alabama troops 
were concentrated at Yorktown from Gloucester Point and Rich- 
mond and organized into a regiment under Colonel John A. 
Winston. Major George W. Randolph (the successor, shortly 
after, of Mr. Walker as Secretary of War) had a small battalion 
of artillery at Yorktown; and Lieutenant-Colonel William D. 

The Bethel Regiment. 83 

Stuart, of .the Third Virginia Regiment, and Major E. B. Mon- 
tague, were sufficiently near to reach Bethel Church, each with 
three companies, on the morning of the lOtb, the day of the 

Such was the military situation — so far as the troops with 
which we had to confront General Butler were concerned — for 
several days before and after the battle of Bethel. About two 
weeks before, a party of some three hundred Federal troops had 
come up from Hampton and occupied Bethel Church. They 
remained a day or two, and left a number of incriptions on the 
walls of the church — "Death to the Traitors!" "Down with 
the Rebels!" and the like — which were read with interest by our 
men upon arrival. Colonel Magruder determined to put a stop 
to these bold incursions, and made his dispositions accordingly. 

the battle of bethel.* 

On Thursday, the 6th of June, Colonel Hill, under orders 
from Colonel Magruder, proceeded with the First North Caro- 
lina Regiment to Big Bethel Church. This place is situated on 
the Hampton road about thirteen miles from Yorktown-, some 
eight miles from Hampton, and about the same distance from 
Newport News. Major Randolph, with four pieces of artillery, 
accompanied the expedition. 

The march from Yorktown was accomplished by about dusk. 
It was a trying one, as it was made in heavy marching order, 
with knapsacks, haversacks, canteens, loaded cartridge-boxes, 
often a Bible in the knapsack, and with a tin cup and an extra 
pair of shoes dangling from either corner of this rather boxey 
affair. The light marching order of Jackson's foot-cavalry was 
as yet a sealed chapter of the regulations. A drizzling mist had 
set in before dark, and it was the regiment's first experience at 
cooking with ramrods and bivouacking without tents. 

•There is no detailed account of the battle of Bethel in the offlcial records. Indeed, 
General Butler (" War of the Eebellion," Vol. II, page 82) declares that it would serve no 
useful purpose, liowever interesting such an account would be, to attempt to make it in 
the abseuce of a " map of the ground and details." Endeavor has been made, therefore, 
in this article, to construct such an account by a comparison of the various official reports 
of both sides which have been published. 

84 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

There was not even a hamlet about the church at that time^ 
and no doubt it is the same to-day — simply a grove beside and 
on the west side- of the road, with a large, unpainted woodeu 
country meeting-house standing in the midst of the grove and 
facing the road. The regiment had traversed a sandy level up to 
this point, but here the land falls oif to the southward and to 
the right and left of the road, the depression on the right, back 
of the church, being somewhat precipitous. A creek which forms 
the headwaters of the northwest branch of Back River flows in 
this depression, a branch of the creek coming through the ravine 
back of the church. A flat wooden bridge carried the road over 
'the creek, a hundred yards or so southeast of the church. 

Some three miles beyond Big Bethel was Little Bethel Churchy 
where our mounted pickets had an outpost. 

The two maps* herewith illustrate the country adjacent to the 
battlefield and the battlefield itself. 

On the morning of the 7th, Colonel Hill made a reconnais- 
sance of the ground with a view to fortifying it. He gives the 
result in his official report as follows: 

" I found a branch of Back River on our front, and encircling 
our right flank. On our left was a dense and almost impassable 
wood, except about one hundred and fifty yards of old field. 
The breadth of the road, a thick wood, and narrow cultivated 
field covered our rear. The nature of the ground determined me to 
make an inclosed work, and I had the invaluable aid of Lieutenant- 
Colonel Lee of my regiment in its plan and construction. Our posi- 
tion had the inherent defect of being commanded by an immense 
field immediately in front of it,t upon which the masses of the 
enemy might be readily deployed. Presuming that an attempt 
would be made to carry the bridge across the stream, a battery 

*Upon map No. 1, of Plate No. XVIIl, of the atlases accompanying the Government's 
publication, " War of the Rebellion," as a basis, an outline map has been prepared of so 
much of the York Peninsula as may be useful for the present purpose. A map of the 
battlefield of Bethel has also been prepared from a tracing of the original map made by 
General Lewis (then Second Lieutenant of Company A) a few days after the battle. The 
positions of the Federal troops have been located by a study of their oflJicial reports. 
Those of tho Confederates are as given in Lieutenant Lewis's map, and are those' held 
just before the opening of the battle. There were some important changes afterwards^ 
and these are noted in detail further on. 

t Across the stream. 

1. Ship Point, 

2. Camp Payetteville (Cockletown). 
8. Camp Eains. 

The Bethel Eeg.iment. 85 

was made for its especial protection, and Major Randolph 
placed his guns so as to sweep all the approaches to it. The 
O(?cupation of two commanding eminences beyond the creek and 
on our right would have greatly strengthened our position, but 
our force was too weak to admit of the occupation of more than 
one of them. A battery was laid out on it for one of Ran- 
dolph's howitzers." 

There were but twenty-five spades, six axes and three picks in 
possession of the command, but these were plied so vigorously 
all day and night of the 7th and all day on the 8th that the work 
began to show the outlines of a fortified camp. 

On the afternoon of the 8th, Colonel Hill learned that a ma- 
rauding party of the enemy was within a few miles of the camp, 
and called for a detachment to drive them back. Lieutenant 
Frank N. Roberts, of Company F, "promptly responded," says 
Colonel Hill in his report, "and in five minutes his command 
was en route." 

Colonel Hill detached Major Randolph, with one howitzer, to 
join them, and Lieutenant-Colonel Lee (of the First Regiment) 
volunteered to take command of the whole. They came upon 
the marauders, five miles off, "busy over the spoils of a plun- 
dered house." A shell from the howitzer put them to flight. 
Soon after information came that seventy-five marauders were 
on the Back River road. Colonel Hill called upon Captain 
McDowell's company. Company E, "and in three minutes it was 
in hot pursuit." A howitzer was detached to join them, and 
Major James H. Lane (of the First Regiment) volunteered to 
command the whole. The marauders were encountered, after a 
long march, near New -Market Bridge. Within sight of the 
flags, at Hampton and hearing of the drums calling to arms. 
Lane opened fire and drove the enemy across the bridge, wound- 
ing a large number of the marauders and capturing one. Col- 
onel Hill afterwards declared that the boldness of this attack, 
made under the very guns of the enemy's chief camp, brought 
on the battle of Bethel. As a result of this expedition, so the 

86 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

citizens reported, two cart loads and one buggy load of dead 
and wounded were taken into Hampton. None were hurt on 
our side. 

Colonel Magruder carue up the same evening and assumed 
command. On the uext day (Sunday) a fresh supply of intrench- 
ing tools enabled the men to make further progress on the works. 

Colonel Hill says in his report : " We were aroused at 3 o'clock 
on Monday morning* for a general advance upon the enemy, 
and marched three and a half miles, when we learnedf that 
the foe, in large force, was within a few hundred yards of us. 
We fell back hastily upon our intrenchments, and awaited the 
arrival of the invaders." 

Meanwhile, information of the activity of our troops had 
reached General Butler at Fortress Monroe. He organized a 
force consisting of nearly all of seven infantry regiments and of 
artillery sufficient for serving four gutis, which were carried with 
the expedition. In his report to Lieutenant-General Scott he 
says that his instructions to this force were "to drive them (the 
rebels) back and destroy their camp" at Little Bethel. This 
being accomplished, a couple of regiments were "to follow im- 
mediately upon the heels of the fugitives, if they were enabled 
to get off, and attack the battery on the road to Big Bethel while 
covered by the fugitives." 

General Butler's confidence was destined to receive a rude 
shock. He had but recently left the Annapolis department, 
where he would have become familiar with the circumstances of 
the evacuation of Alexandria on May 6th, J and of the Confed- 
erate disaster at Philippi, in Western Virginia, on June 3d.§ 
Prestige, so far, was decidedly against us, and General Butler's 
expectation of the surprise and rout of our forces was not un- 
natural. Prestige counts for much in war as in other human 
affairs, and it was a matter of vast consequence upon which side 

*June loth. 

■fA purse of S225 was made up by the officers of the regiment after the battle and pre- 
sented to the old lady who brought the information. 

t" War of the Rebellion," Vol. II, pages 23-27. 

llbid., pages G9-74, 

The Bethel Regiment. 87 

it should remain after the first serious shock of arms. Great as 
was the responsibility, therefore, which fate and their own state 
of preparedness had thrust upon our North Carolinians, they 
were presently to exhibit a signal proof of their ability to 
meet it. 

General Butler laid his plans carefully.* Instructions were 
given Brigadier-General Pierce, commanding at Hampton, to 
send forward Colonel Duryea's Fifth New York Regiment 
(Zouaves) at one o'clock on the morning of the 10th, by way of 
New Market Bridge, and thence by a by-road to a point between 
Little Bethel and Big Bethel, with the object of taking our out- 
post there in the rear. Colonel Townsend's Third New York 
Regiment, with a couple of mountain howitzers, was instructed 
to support Duryea, marching about an hour later. At the same 
time Colonel Phelps, commanding at Newport News, was directed 
to send out a battalion under command of Lieutenaut-Colonel 
Washburn in time to make a demonstration upon Little Bethel 
in front, and to have him supported by Colonel Bendix's Sev- 
enth New York Regiment with two field-pieces. 

Washburn's Battalion was made up of three hundred men 
from the First Vermont and three hundred men from Wash- 
burn's own regiment, the Fourth Massachusetts. The two field- 
pieces were of the Second United States Artillery (regulajs), 
under command of Lieutenant Greble. The two mountain how- 
itzers with Townsend were manned by a detachment from Col- 
onel Carr's Second New York Regiment, " under the direction 
of a non-commissioned officer and four privates of the United 
States Army." The two supporting regiments, Townsend's and 
Bendix's, were expected to effect a junction at the fork of the 
road leading from Hampton to Newport News, about midway 
between New Market Bridge and Little Bethel. The movement 
was so timed that the attack on Little Bethel should be made at 
daybreak. In case of failure .to surprise the outpost at Little 
Bethel, General Pierce, if he thought it expedient, was directed 
to attack the work at Big Bethel. 

•" War of the RebelliOD," page 77 et seq. 

88 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

In General Butler's "plan of operations" were instructions to 
"Burn up both the Bethels. Blow up, if brick." Artillerists 
to "handle the captured guns," and "spikes to spike them," 
were also to be provided. 

Everything went according to the plan, up to a certain point. 
Duryea and Washburn had arrived at the places assigned thena, 
and Bendix's supporting regiment had arrived at the fork of the 
road where the junction was to be made with Townsend. As 
day dawned Townseud's Regiment, with General Pierce and his 
aide-de-camp in advance, were within a hundred yards of Bendix's 
position, when suddenly the latter opened upon Townsend's col- 
umn with both artillery and musketry, killing two and wound- 
ing nineteen, four of the latter being officers. General Pierce 
says that he was on the point of ordering a charge upon the sup- 
posed enemy when the mistake was discovered. Duryea and 
Washburn, hearing the firing in their rear, "reversed their march," 
to use General Butler's expression, and joined their belligerent 
reserves. Pierce held a council of war, decided to attack Bethel, 
and sent to Butler for re-in forcemeats, who dispatched to him 
Colonel Allen's First and Colonel Carr's Second New York 

The enemy's forces, therefore, which were engaged against us 
at i^ethel, may be summed up as follows: 

First New York, Colonel Allen,*- . . 750 

Second New York, Colonel Carr,* . . 750 

(A detachment acting as artillerists). 
Third New York, Colonel Townsend, . . 650 

Fifth New York, Colonel Duryea, . . 850 

Seventh New York, Colonel Bendix,* . . 750 

First Vermont,! 300 

Fourth Massachusetts,! .... 300 

(Both under Lieutenant-Colonel Washburn). 
Second U. S: Artillery, Greble's Detachment, say, 50 
Total, 4,400 

*Thi8 is the average of the known strength of Duryea's and Townsend's Regiments 
IS given in Pierce's report, "War of the Rebellion," Vol. II, page 83. ' 

fBendix's report, Ibid.^ page 88. 

The Bethel Regiment. 89 

General, staff and couriers, and four guns. 

General Pierce's General Order No. 12, given in his report, 
also mentions Colonel McChesney's command as one of those 
designated to be held in readiness along with Allen's and Carr's. 
If also sent forward, that would swell the total to some 5,200. 

While these proceedings were taking place with the enemy, the 
First North Carolina Volunteers were hurrying forward, over 
Lee's and Lane's familiar course, towards New Market Bridge. 
It is certain that neither of the marching columns was aware of 
the action of the other — the North Carolinians starting out from 
Big Bethel at three o'clock in the morning, and Butler's army 
from Hampton and Newport News at one o'clock and two 
o'clock. Except for Bendix's daybreak fight and the consequent 
delay, we should probably have come upon Duryea's and Wash- 
burn's troops a little to the Yorktown side of Little Bethel. 

Our forces as assembled for battle may be thus summarized: 

First North Carolina Regiment, Colonel Hill, . 800 

Three companies of the Third Virginia Regi- 
ment, Lieutenant-Colonel Stuart,* . . 208 

Three companies of Virginia troops. Major 
Montague (estimated), . . . .150 

Battalion of Virginia Artillery, Major Randolph 
(estimated), . . . . . .150 

Douthatt's, Phillips's and Jones's companies of 
Virginia Cavalry (estimated), . . . 100 

Total, 1,408 

Randolph reports one rifled (iron) Parrott gun, three how- 
itzers, and one rifled howitzer on the ground. He sent, besides, 
one howitzer to the "Half- Way House," some three miles away, 
and one howitzer had previously been posted "in the rear of the 
road leading from the Half- Way House." 

At nine o'clock the head of the enemy's column (Bendix's 
Seventh New York) appeared in the road, half a mile away, and 

♦Stuart's report, " War of the Rebellion," Vol. II, page 97. 

90 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

soon they seemed to fill it. Who will forget that tremendous 
moment, ushering in the war! A few minutes after nine o'clock 
a shot from Eandolph's Parrot gun, aimed by himself, screamed 
away at them. It hit the earth just in their front and ricocheted.* 
They fell away from the road like a mist before the sun, their 
artillery at once replied, and the battle began. 

The positions of the several companies of the First North 
Carolina Regiment at the opening of the battle, and their changes 
of position during its progress, were as follows: 

Company A, Captain Bridgers, was posted in the dense wood, 
or swamp, beyond the works, beyond the creek, and to the left 
of the road. They were deployed as skirmishers. When Brown's 
howitzer was spiked and abandoned. Company A was transferred 
to the right, where they attacked the enemy and recovered the 

Company B, Lieutenant Owens, on the south face of the 
works. From this position the company took part in the repulse 
of the enemy^'s first attempt on our right and in the repulse of 
Winthrop's attack. 

Company C, Captain Ross, on the left of Company B, and 
occupying the adjacent part of the east face of the works. After 
the temporary capture by the enemy of Brown's abandoned how- 
itzer, Company C was ordered (with Company A) to recapture 
it. When this was done they were returned to their original posi- 
tion, where they took part in the repulse of Winthrop's attack. 

Company D, Captain Ashe, at the northeast angle of the 

Company E, Captain McDowell, on the north and northwest 
faces of the works. 

Company F, Captain Starr, in the woods to the north and left 
of Company D's position, with exception of a detachment under 
Lieutenant Roberts, stationed at a ford a mile below the bridge. 

Company G, Captain Avery, was thrown beyond the stream, 
to the right of the road, near an old mill-dam, where they took 
part in the repulse of the enemy's first advance on our right. 

*Bendix says in his report: "Before we had got ready for action the enemy opened 
their Are upon us, striking one man down at my side at the first shot." 

The Bethel Regiment. 91 

Subsequently they were mover! forward to the support of the 
howitzer which had replaced the spiked and abandoned one. 

Company H, Captain Huske, on the west face of the works, 
on the right (north) of Montague's Battalion. Shortly after the 
fight began Company H was moved forward to the support of 
the main battery (Randolph's), southeast of the church. When 
Winthrop made his attack upon the southeast angle, half of the 
company, under Lieutenants Cook and McKethan, were sent 
thither by Colonel Magruder, where they took part in the 
repulse of Winthrop. 

Company I, Lieutenant Parker, on the right (north) of Com- 
pany H's first position, and extending to the northwest angle of 
the works. During the progress of the battle Company I was 
deployed in front of its position in the works and remained thus 
until it was over. 

Company K, Captain Hoke, in the woods on the left (north) 
of Company F. During the battle Company K was deployed 
one hundred and fifty yards in front of its position, in anticipa- 
tion of Winthrop's skirmishers striking there. Upon their fail- 
ure to do this, it was withdrawn to its original position. At 
the close of the battle Company K was sent forward, as described 
further on. 

Lieutenant- Colonel Stuart's three companies were stationed on 
the hill to the extreme right, beyond the creek, where he com- 
pleted the slight breastwork erected to protect his command. 

Major Montague's three companies were stationed on the west 
face of the works, back and northwest of the church. Upon 
Stuart's retirement to this point, shortly after the action began, 
Montague's command was ordered to a point a mile and a quarter 
to the left. The enemy making no demonstration in that quar- 
ter, they took no other part in the action. 

Randolph's artillery was posted as follows: The Parrott gun 
and one howitzer in the main battery on the right of the road, 
near the front of the church; a howitzer under Captain Brown 
in the battery erected on the right, beyond the ravine; a howitzer 
near the bridge, on the right of the road; the rifled howitzer on 

92 North Carolina Troops, 18 61-'65. 

the left of the road, behind the right of the redoubt erected 

The three coQipanies of cavalry (dismounted) were posted in 
rear of the whole.f 

A detachment of fifteen cadets from the North Carolina Mili- 
tary Institute was posted beside the last mentioned howitzer. 

How these dispositions for defense appeared to the attack- 
ing party is revealed by their reports of the battle. 

Captain Judson Kilpatrick, of Duryea's Fifth New York 
(afterwards the cavalry general who had the interesting experi- 
ence with Wheeler's Cavalry near Fayetteville in 1865), with two 
companies of his regiment, acted as the enemy's advance guard. 

He says that he drove in our pickets at eight o'clock, and 
then made an "armed reaonnaissance" of our position and forces. 
He was much impressed with what he saw. He "found the 
enemy with about- from three to five thousand men posted in a 
stroug position on the opposite side of the bridge, three earth- 
works and a masked "battery on the right and left; in advance of 
the stream thirty pieces of artillery and a large force of cavalry." J 
General Butler's view, from Fortress Monroe, was different. He 
reiterated in his report his conviction that we had not more than 
a regiment during the battle, and that if his orders " to go ahead 
with the bayonet," after the first volley, had been obeyed, the 
"battery" would have been captured. 

When within a mile of our position, General Pierce halted his 

*The following is a summary of such portions of Major Randolph's i-eport as are useful 
to the present purpose; The howitzer on the right (under Captain Brown) was spiked 
early in the action by the breaking of a priming-wire, and was withdrawn. It was re- 
placed near the close by Moseley's howitzer, brought up from the Half- Way House. The 
ford on the left being threatened, the howitzer at the bridge was withdrawn and sent to 
that point. The rifled howitzer was withdrawn from the left of the road and sent to the 
rear when tliat was supposed to be threatened. The same disposition was subsequently 
made of the howitzer in the main battery near the church, leaving only the Parrott gun 
there. Randolph says in his report: "The fire was maintained on our side for sometime 
by the five pieces posted in front"; but one of them being spilled and another sent to the 
ford early in the' action, "the fire was continued with three pieces, and at no time did 
we afterwards have more than three pieces playing upon the enemy." He reports ninety- 
eight shot altogether fired by his artillery. As his first shot was shortly after nine o'clock 
and his last at half past one o'clock, that would be an average of one in three minutes. 
The three wounded in his battalion received their injury, in the words of his report, 
"from the fire of musketry on Our left flank, the ground on that side between us and the 
enemy sinking down so as to expose us over the top of the breastwork erected by the 
North Carolina regiment." (The fire of musketry alluded to was from Winthrop's attaclt- 
ing force). 

fMagruder's report, " War of the Rebellion," Vol. II, page 91. 
JKilpatrick's report, " War of the Rebellion," Vol. II, page 89. 

The Bethel Regiment. 93 

column, and thea, witliiu eight hundred yards of our works, 
formed his troops in line of battle. Duryea's Fifth New York 
was placed od the right (our left) of the road. Washburn's 
Vermonters and Massachusetts men, after some preliminary 
movements, were also sent to the right and placed in extension 
of Duryea's line. Townsend's Third New York was formed on 
the left (our right) of the road. Bendix's Seventh New York, 
which had brought up the rear in the march from the scene of 
his daybreak fusillade, was now ordered to the front.* The 
head of his column was dispersed, as we have seen, by Randolph's 
opening shot, after which, as Beudix reports, he did the best he 
could "as skirmishers in the woods" (on our left), finally taking 
position with Washburn's command. Bendix had one piece of 
artillery with him when he first moved to the front. This seems 
to have been joined by the three other pieces, when all were 
served, under Greble's command, in or near the orchard to the 
left (our right) of the road. 

The first movement upon our lines was made by two com- 
panies of Townsend's Regiment, advancing as skirmishers against 
our right. They were promptly driven back by our artillery, 
one of Stuart's companies, and companies B and G of the First 
North Carolina. 

Meanwhile, Duryea's and Washburn's troops, advancing against 
our left, made several attempts to charge our works, but, were 
prevented by the creek. f During these attempts they approached 
the old ford below the bridge, where Colonel Hill had posted a 
picket of some forty men under Lieutenant Roberts. This led 
Colonel Magruder to re-inforce the latter with Werth's company 
of Montague's Battalion and the howitzer at the bridge, which 
latter drove back the enemy with one shot. J 

Townsend now moved forward his whole regiment in line of 
battle against our right, with one hundred of Duryea's Fifth 
Regiment (Zouaves) as skirmishers on his right. In this forward 

*Bendix's report, "War of the Rebellion," page 88. 
tPieree's report. Ibid., Vol. II, page 85. 
tWerth's report Ibid., page 103. 

94 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

movement, TowDseDd reports that one of his companies (presum- 
ably the one on his left flank) got separated from the rest of the 
regiment by a "thickly- hedged ditch" (probably the ravine 
mentioned in Stuart's report), but continued to march forward in 
line with it. Captain Brown's gun having been disabled and 
withdrawn some time before, Colonel Stuart reported to Colonel 
Magruder the advance of this heavy force (which he estimated 
at fifteen hundred, accompanied by artillery), and the advance, 
also, of " a line of skirmishers down the ravine on my right," 
obscured from his own view but discovered by his scouts. He 
was accordingly directed by Colonel Magruder to fall back to 
the works occupied by Montague, back of the church, and the 
whole of our advanced troops (that is, those across the creek, on 
the right of the road) were withdrawn. 

At this critical moment Colonel Hill called Captain Bridgers, 
with his Company A, of the First North Carolina, out of the 
swamp (on the left) and directed him to occupy the nearest ad- 
vanced work (on the right of the road). He also ordered Cap- 
tain Eoss, with his Company C, of the First North Carolina, to 
the support of Lieutenant-Colonel Stuart. "These two captains, 
with their companies," says Hill, "crossed over to Randolph's 
battery, under a most heavy fire, in a most gallant manner. As 
Lieutenant-Colonel Stuart had withdrawn. Captain Ross was 
detained at the church, near Randolph's battery. Captain 
Bridgers, however, crossed over and drove the Zouaves out of 
the advanced howitzer battery, and re-occupied it. It is impos- 
sible to overestimate this service. It decided the action in our 

Of this decisive movement Colonel Magruder says in his 
hasty report, made the same day: 

"Whilst it might appear invidious to speak particularly of 
any regiment or corpsj whefe all behaved so well, I am compelled 
to express my great appreciation of the skill and gallantry of 
Major Randolph and his howitzer battalion and Colonel Hill, the 
officers and men of the North Carolina regiment. As an instance 

The Bethel Regiment. 95 

of the latter, I will merely mention that a gun under the gallant 
Captain Brf)wn of the howitzer battery having been rendered 
unfit for service by the breaking of a priming-wire in the vent, 
Captain Brown threw it over a precipice, and the work was occu- 
pied for a moment by the enemy. Captain Bridgers, of the 
North Carolina regiment, in the most gallant manner, retook it 
and held it until Captain Brown had replaced and put in posi- 
tion another piece, and defended it with his infantry in the most 
gallant manner. Colonel Hill's judicious and determined action 
was worthy of his ancient glory." 

In Colonel Magruder's second report, dated June 12th, he 
again refers to the subject, saying: 

"I cannot omit to again bring to the notice of the General 
Commanding-in-Chief the valuable services and gallant conduct 
of the First North Carolina Regiment and Major Randolph of 
the howitzer batteries. These officers were not only prompt and 
daring in the execution of their duties, but most industrious and 
energetic in the preparations for the conflict. The firing of the 
howitzer batteries was as perfect as the bearing of the men, which 
was entirely what it ought to have been. Captain Bridgers, of 
the North Carolina regiment, re-took in the most daring manner, 
and at a critical period of the fight, the work from which 
Captain Brown of the artillery had withdrawn a disabled gun 
to prevent its falling into the hands of the enemy, and which 
work had been subsequently occupied by the enemy. Captain 
Bridgers deserves the highest praise for this timely act of gal- 

Stuart was now sent back to his original position; he and 
Captain Avery, with his Company G, of the First North Caro- 
lina, drove off some skirmishers advancing through the orchard ; 
and the enemy's operations ceased on that side of the road. 

It is interesting to note that the same company of Townsend's 
men who were separated from the rest of their regiment, and 
were supposed by Stuart to be moving to outflank him, were 

96 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

mistaken by Townsend for a flanking party from our side. 
Townsend says, referring to this company of his regiment: "Upon 
seeing among the breaks in the hedge the glistening bayonets in 
the adjoining field, I immediately concluded that the enemy were 
outflanking us, and conceived it to be my duty immediately to 
retire and repel that advance. I resumed, therefore, my original 
position on the left of Colonel Duryea. Shortly after all the 
forces were directed to retire, the design of the reconnaissance 
having been accomplished." 

A very potent body of men that separated company proved 
to be. 

We were now as secure, says Colonel Hill, as at the beginning 
of the fight, and as yet had no man killed. Foiled on our right 
flank, the enemy now made his final efibrt upon our left. A 
column consisting of Washburn's command of Vermont and 
Massachusetts troops, led by Major Theodore Winthrop, of Gen- 
eral Butler's staff^, crossed over the creek and appeared at the 
angle on our left. They came on with a cheer, no doubt think- 
ing that our work was open at the gorge and that they could 
enter by a sudden rush. "Companies B and C, however," says 
Colonel Hill, "dispelled the illusion by a cool, deliberate and 
well directed fire. Colonel Magruder sent over portions of com- 
panies G, C and H of my regiment to our support, and now 
began as cool firing on our side as was ever witnessed. The 
three field officers of the regiment were present, and but few 
shots were fired without their permission. * * * They (the 
men) were all in high glee, and seemed to enjoy it. * * * 
Captain Winthrop, while most gallantly urging on his men, was 
shot through the heart,* when all rushed back with the utmost 

Major Theodore Winthrop, the officer referred to, was Gen- 
eral Butler's acting military secretary, who represented General 
Butler upon General Pierce's staff. He was of the old Massa- 

*Private G. W. Buhman aad private Steve Kussell, of Company H (Fayettevillel pri- 
vate Molver, of Company (Charlotte), and Captain Ashe, Company D (Chapel Hill) for 
his negro servant, claimed the firing of the fatal shot. 

The Bethel Regiment. 97 

chusetts family of Winthrop, but the son of Francis Bayard 
Winthrop, of New Haven, Connecticut. 

The fight at the angle lasted but twenty minutes. It seemed 
to completely discourage the enemy, and he made no further 
effort at assault. It is no doubt to this period that Colonel Ma- 
gruder refers in his report when he sets the ending of the battle 
at half past twelve o'clock, whereas Major Randolph says the 
last shot was fired at half past one o'clock. 

Meanwhile, Colonel Allen's First New York and Colonel 
Carr's Second New York had come up. General Pierce threw 
Allen's Regiment into the lane on his left which Townsend's 
Third Regiment had occupied at the beginning of its advance, 
and from which it had now retired ; and he placed Carr's Regi- 
ment in the position which had been occupied by Duryea's Fifth 
Regiment, now withdrawn. Under protection of this new line 
the dead and wounded were ordered to be collected and carried 
off. The retreat then began, Allen's and Carr's Regiments cov- 
ering the rear. 

The following extract from Major Randolph's report gives us 
a glimpse of Alien's and Carr's Regiments as they arrived on the 

"After some intermission of the assault in front, a heavy col- 
umn, apparently a re-inforcement, or reserve, made its appear- 
ance on the Hampton road and pressed forward towards the 
bridge, carrying the United States flag near the head of the 
column. As the road had been clear for some time, and our 
flanks and rear had been threatened, the howitzer in the main 
battery* had been sent to the rear, and our fire did not at first 
check them. I hurried a howitzer forward from the rear, loaded 
it with canister and prepared to sweep the approach to the 
bridge, but the fire of the Parrott gun again drove them back. 
The howitzer brought from the Half- Way House by Lieutenant 
Moseley arriving most opportunely, I carried it to the battery 
on the right to replace the disabled piece. On getting there, I 

*By the "main battery" Major Randolph means the one near the church, containing 
the Parrott gan and a howitzer. 


98 North Carolina Troops, 1861 -'65. 

learned from the infantry that a small house in front was occu- 
pied by sharp-shooters, and saw the body of a Carolinian lying 
thirty yards in front of the battery, who had been killed in a 
most gallant attempt to burn the house. I opened upon the 
house with shell for the purpose of burning it, and the battery 
of the enemy in the Hampton road being on the line with it, 
and supposing probably that the fire was at them, immediately 
returned it with solid shot. This disclosed their position, and 
enabled me to fire at the house and at their battery at the same 
time. After an exchange of five or six shots a shell entered a 
window of the house, increased the fire already kindled, until it 
soon broke out into a light blaze, and, as I have reason to be- 
lieve, disabled one of the enemy's pieces. This was the last shot 
fired.* They soon after retreated, and we saw no more of them." 

Lieutenant John T. Greble, of the Second United States Ar- 
tillery (regulars), was killed "by a cannon shot," says General 
Butler, and General Pierce tells us that this occurred "just at 
the close of the action." He was in command of the enemy's 
artillery, and was regarded as an able as well as a gallant officer. 

Captain Hoke, with his Company K, of the First North Caro- 
lina, now advanced and explored the woods in front. Upon his 
ascertaining that the road was clear, some one hundred dragoons, 
under Captain Douthatt, pursued the enemy as far as New Mar- 
ket Bridge, which the latter tore up behind hipi. "The enemy 
in his haste," says Colonel Hill, "threw away hundreds of can- 
teens, haversacks, overcoats, etc.; even the dead were thrown out 
of the wagons," and "the pursuit soon became a chase." 


It will be seen that there were two crises in the battle; one 
when Bridgers made his brilliant charge and recaptured the 
redoubt from which our troops had withdrawn upon the advance 
of Townsend's Regiment and a portion of Duryea's; the other 

*Elsewhere ia his report, " War of the Rebellion," Vol. II, page 99, Major Randolph 
fixes the hour at which the cannonading ceased at half past one. 

The Bethel Regiment. 99 

when Company B, re-inforced by portions of Companies C, G 
and H, repulsed "Winthrop's bold attack. It is probable that 
the failure of either of these splendid efforts of the North Caro- 
linians would have given victory to the enemy. The ordeal 
which those companies underwent in running the gauntlet of the 
enemy's concentrated fire, in passing in the open from the left to 
the right and from the right to the left, was a trying one for 
unseasoned troops, but from which not a man flinched. 


Summing up the achievements of his command, Colonel Hill 
says: "There were not quite eight hundred of my regiment 
engaged in the fight, and not one-half of these drew trigger 
during the day. All remained manfully at the posts assigned 
them, and not a man in the regiment behaved- badly. The com- 
panies not engaged were as much exposed and rendered ecjual 
service with those participating in the fight. They deserve 
equally the thanks of the country. In fact, it is the most try- 
ing ordeal to which soldiers can be subjected, to receive a fire 
which their orders forbid them to return. Had a single com- 
pany left its post our works would have been exposed ; and the 
constancy and discipline of the unengaged companies cannot be 
too highly commended. * * * j cannot speak in too high 
terms of my two field officers, Lieutenant- Colonel Lee and Ma- 
jor Lane. Their services have been of the highest importance 
since taking the field to the present moment." In another part 
of his report. Colonel Hill says: ''We had never more than 
three hundred actively engaged at any one time" — meaning 
troops of all arms. 

For Colonel Hill's acknowledgments to his staff and to his 
company officers and others in detail, the reader is referred to the 
extract from his report given in the appendix to this article. 

After the battle was over and the enemy had retreated, the 
Louisiana regiment arrived, after a forced march from York- 
town. On the other hand, as a set-off against this ex post facto 
re-inforcement, it is worth recording that an associated press dis- 

100 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65 

patch, dated at Fortress Monroe, June 10th, stated that Colonel 
McChesney's Regiment formed a reserve for General Pierce's 
army, and also that Colonel Hawkins's Regiment had "moved 
from Newport News" during the day. 

Yorktown being exposed, the battlefield was occupied by 
cavalry, and the i-emainder of the troops, including the Louisiana 
regiment, were marched back to the former place the same night. 


The body of the Carolinian whom Major Randolph saw lying 
thirty yards in front of the recovered battery was that of private 
Wyatt, of Captain Bridgers's Company A (Edgecombe Guards), 
of the First North Carolina Regiment. When Bridgers recap- 
tured the battery he found in his front the house mentioned by 
Major Randolph, used as a shelter for the enemy's sharp-shooters^ 
as described. At Colonel Hill's suggestion, Captain Bridgers 
called for five volunteers to burn it. Corporal George Williams 
and privates Henry L. Wyatt, Thomas Fallon, John H. Thorpe 
and R. H. Bradley responded. At once they leaped the works 
and went on their dangerous mission. "They behaved with 
great gallantry," says Colonel Hill in his reporb. On the way 
Wyatt was killed, and the others were recalled. 

Of Wyatt, Colonel Magruder's report says : " Too much praise 
cannot be bestowed upon the heroic soldier whom we lost. He 
was one of four who volunteered to set fire to a house in our front 
which was thought to afford protection to our enemy, and advanc- 
ing between the two fires, he fell midway, pierced in the fore- 
head by a musket ball. Henry L. Wyatt is the name of this 
brave soldier and devoted patriot. He was a member of the 
brave and gallant First North Carolina Regiment." 

In the Virginia volume of the "Confederate Military History," 
Major Jed Hotchkiss, its author, says: "It is generally admitted 
that young Wyatt was the first Confederate soldier killed in action 
in Virginia daring the civil war." As that was also the first 
battle of the war, it may be recorded that Wyatt was the first 
Confederate soldier killed in battle in that war. 


1. George Williams, Corporal, Co. A. 3. R. H. Bradley, Private, Co. A. 

8. Henry L. Wyatt, Private, Co. A. (The 4. Jolin H. Tllorpe, Private, Co. A. 
first Confederate soldier slain in bat- 
tle, June 10, 1861, at Bethel.) 

The Bethel Ebgiment. 101 

Private John H. Thorpe, an honor graduate of the University 
of North Carolina, one of the four companions of Wyatt, after- 
wards a captain in the Forty-seventh Rgiment, thus describes the 
death of Wyatt : 

" When we got there [the redoubt] I saw a Zouave regiment 
of the enemy in line of battle about three hundred yards away. 
Our boys popped away at them, but the fire was not returned. 
Then, in good order, they marched away down the New Market 
road. Probably the order to retreat had been given the whole 
Federal army. A few minutes later Colonel Hill, passing from 
our right through the company, said: 'Captain Bridgers, can't 
you have that house burned?' and immediately went on. Cap- 
tain Bridgers asked if five of the company would volunteer to 
burn it, suggesting that one of the number should be an officer. 
Corporal George T. Williams said he would be the officer and 
four others said they would go. Matches and a hatchet were 
provided at once, and a minute later the little party scrambled 
over the breastworks in the following order: George T. Wil- 
liams, Thomas Fallon, John H. Thorpe, Henry L. Wyatt and 
R. H. Bradley. A volley was fired at us as if by a company, 
not from the house, but from the road to our left. As we were 
well drilled in skirmishing, all of us instantly dropped to the 
ground, Wyatt mortally wounded. He never uttered a word or 
a groan, but lay limp on his back, his arms extended, one knee 
up and a clot of blood on his forehead as large as a man's fist. 
He was lying within four feet of me, and this is the way I saw 
him. * * * To look at Wyatt one would take him to be 
tenacious of life; low, but robust in build, guileless, open, frank, 

Wyatt's body was soon taken off the field by his comrades, 
who carried him to Yorktown the same night, where he died. 
He had apparently not recovered consciousness from the time 
he was struck. His body was carried to Richmond the next 
dav, where he was buried with military honors from the Rev- 
erend Mr. Duncan's church. 

102 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Camps were named for Wyatt during the war; his portrait 
has been placed in the State Library at Raleigh; and his memory, 
as well as that of the First Regiment, is perpetuated in the in- 
scription: "First at Bethel; last at Appomattox!" cut upon the 
Confederate Monument in front of the Capitol. 

Henry Lawson Wyatt was a son of Isham and Lucinda Wyatt, 
of Tarboro. He was twenty years of age at his death. His 
parents had moved to Tarboro in 1856 from Pitt county, though 
he was born during their early residence in Richmond, Va. 


The battle of Bethel was but a small afikir in itself, if we 
compare it with the sanguinary conflicts between vast bodies of 
men of which it was the precursor. But it made a profound 
impression upon the country, raising the enthusiasm of the South 
to the highest pitch,* repressing disaffection there, and at the 
same time chilling the ardor of their adversaries at the North. 
It was the cause of crimination and recrimination between the 
Federal officers engaged and responsible for it, and their several 
adherents. Loud calls were made in the Northern press for the 
removal of General Butler, notwithstanding the placatory assur- 
ances, in anticipation, which his official reports contained. Among 
the latter were the declarations that " we have gained much more 
than we have lost," and that "while the advance upon the bat- 
tery and the capture of it might have added eclat to the occasion, 
it would not have added to its substantial results." The chief 
of these appears to have been that "our troops have learned to 
have confidence in themselves under fire." The New York 
Tribune declared that the President would do well to make peace 
with the Confederacy at once, if he was not willing to send gen- 
erals into Virginia who were " up to their work." The Herald, 

*An illustration is presented by the experienoeof Lieutenant W.E. Kyle (commander 
of sharp-shooters in General iVToRae's Brigade), who was a private in Company H. After 
the battle of Bethel he wrote of the victory to his relatives in Christiansburg Va. his 
native place. The fact that this native of Virginia had been able to take part in winning 
a victory over the invaders of Virginia, because he had become a citizen of North Carolina 
and a member of a North Carolina regiment, excited the emulation of the youth of his 
old home to such an extent that great numbers, who had held back, hastened to enter 
the service. 

The Bethel Regiment. 103 

which sustained General Butler as "evidently the right man in 
the right place," said that the Confederates had at Bethel "six 
batteries of rifled cannon and sixty-eight twelve-pound howit- 
zers," and enough men to admit of the capture (there or there- 
abouts) of " twelve thousand prisoners." The Charleston (S. C.) 
Courier of June 17th contained this: "By a letter received in 
this city yesterday, we learn that a great reaction has taken place 
among the moneyed men of New York and Boston, and that 
petitions are now circulating to be laid before Congress, asking 
the peaceful recognition of the Southern Confederacy and the 
establishment of amicable relations by friendly treaties. The 
petitions set forth that unless the war is brought to a close very 
speedily New York and Boston are ruined cities." 

In the South, on the other hand, the result was hailed as an 
augury of the early triumph of the Confederacy, which had thus 
demonstrated its ability to overcome four times its numerical 
strength on the battlefield — a disproportion almost exactly repre- 
senting the relative populations of the two sections. 

In the Virginia Convention, on the 17th of June, Mr. Tyler 
(ex-President of the United States) submitted a series of reso- 
lutions, which were unanimously adopted, eulogizing Magruder, 
Hill and their officers and men for the recent brilliant victory at 
Bethel Church. Mr. Tyler followed the reading of his resolu- 
tions in a speech of great eloquence and force. There was, he 
said, but one instance on the whole page of history that could 
be cited as a parallel to the victory at Bethel Church — that was 
the battle and the victory of Buena Vista, "where the, gallant 
Davis, now our President, with his Mississippi regiment, and 
the invincible Bragg, with his grape and canister, turned the 
fortunes of the day and routed an enemy of about five to one." 

The Richmond Dispatch said: "It is one of the most extraor- 
dinary victories in the annals of war. Four thousand thoroughly 
drilled and equipped troops routed and driven from the field by 
only eleven hundred men. Two hundred of the enemy killed, 
and on our side but one life lost. Does not the hand of God 
seem manifest in this thing? * * * The courage and con- 

104 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

duct of the noble sons of the South engaged in this battle are 
beyond all praise. They have crowned the name of their country 
with imperishable lustre and made their own names immortal. 
With odds of four to one against them, they have achieved a 
complete victory, putting their enemy to inglorious flight, and 
giving to the world a brilliant pledge of the manner in which 
the South can defend its firesides and altars." 

The Richmond Whig said: "The rush, the dash, the elan of 
our boys was, however, the great and distinguishing feature of 
the affair. Cool and determined as Bonaparte's veterans, they 
pitched into the fight with the gaiety of school-boys into a game 
of ball. They have taken the step which is the augury and 
earnest of victory. Their dashing bearing, in the face of four 
times their number, will inspire a spirit of emulation among all 
our forces, and lead to the rout of the invaders wherever they 
show themselves." 

Nor was there any disposition to withhold credit from North 
Carolina as the chief actor in the great achievement. The press 
of the capital Slate was" lavish in its praise of our regiment. 
Said the Petersburg Express: "All hail to the brave sons of the 
Old North State, whom Providence seems to have thrust forward 
in the first pitched battle on Virginia soil in behalf of Southern 
rights and independence." 

Said the Richmond Whig: "The North Carolina regiment 
covered itself with glory at the battle of Bethel." 

Said the Richmond Examiner, the leading paper of the Con- 
federacy: "Honor those to whom honor is due. All our troops 
appear to have behaved nobly at Bethel, but the honors of the 
day are clearly due to the splendid regiment of North Carolina, 
whose charge of bayonets decided it, and presaged their conduct 
on many a more important field. Virginia's solemn sister is 
justly jealous of glory; her simple, honest, courageous popula- 
tion are weary of the grand silence of their forests of pine ; they 
have come out to fight with a deep determination to make their 
mark, which both friends and foes have yet to fathom. Of this 
occasion North Carolina may be content. No forced praise and 

The Bethel Regiment. 105 

empty compliments are necessary now ; for every statement of 
the facts, made no matter by whom, or how, brings out the steady 
valor and decisive action of her sons and representatives in a light 
too clear to leave any place for error, or cause for regret, except 
that the foe neither would nor could await their advancing line 
of steel." 

In our own State, Governor Ellis promptly recommended to 
the Convention that Colonel Hill, the commander of the North 
Carolina Troops, be promoted to the rank of Brigadier, and that 
a full brigade be formed and placed under his command. 

In the Convention, on June 15th, Mr. Venable offered a reso- 
lution, which was unanimously passed, as follows : 

"Resolved, That this Convention, appreciating the valor and 
good conduct of the ofiScers and men of the First Regiment North 
Carolina Volunteers, do, as a testimony of the same, authorize 
the said regiment to inscribe the word ' Bethel ' upon their 


There appears to have been no regular return made by Colonel 
Magruder of th'C losses sustained on our side. The following is 
a summary compiled from the reports of the commanders of the 
several bodies of Confederate troops engaged or on the ground : 

Command. Killed. Wounded. Total. 

Hill's First North Carolina Regiment, 16 7 

Randolph's (Virginia) Howitzer Bat- 
talion, 3 3 

Stuart's three companies of the Third 
Virginia Regiment, 

Montague's three companies, 

The three companies of Virginia 

Grand total, 1 9 10 


North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

The names of these ten are as follows : 

First North Carolina. — Henry L. Wyatt, private, Company 
A, mortally wounded; Lieutenant J. W. Ratchford, aide-de-camp 
to Colonel Hill, wounded; Council Rodgers, private, Company A, 
severely wounded; Charles AVilliams, private, Company A, 
severely wounded; S. Patterson, private. Company D, slightly 
wounded; William AVhite, private. Company K, wounded ; Peter 
Poteat, private. Company G, slightly wounded. 

Randolph! s Howitzers. — Lieutenant Hudnall (commanding the 
howitzer in Hill's lines on the left of the road), wounded; H. C. 
Shook, private under Hudnall, wounded ; Johu Worth, private 
under Hudnall, wounded. 

The tabulated report of the Federal losses which General But- 
ler gave in his report to Lieutenant-General Scott, dated June 
16th (that being the only one which appears printed in any of 
the Federal reports), is as follows : 

BETHEL, JUNE 10, 1861. 








.. ■ 

. •• 



Fourth Massachusetts, 



First New York, . . . 




Second New York, 




Third New York, . . . 





Fifth New York, . . 




Seventh New York, . . 





First Vermont, . . . 





Second United States Ar- 




Total, .... 





*The staff officer killed was Major Theodore Winthrop. Lieutenant John T. Greble 
(Second United States Artillery) was also among the slain. 

■j-Colonel Magruder's report gives three as the number of pri3oners taken by us. 

The Bethel Regiment. 107 

In Colonel Magruder's second report (June 12th) occurs this: 
"I have now to report that eighteen [Federal] dead were found 
on the field, and I learn from reliable citizens living 6n the road 
that many dead, as well as a great many wounded, were carried 
in wagons to Harapton. I think I can safely report their loss 
at from twenty-five to thirty killed and one hundred and fifty 
wounded. I understand the enemy acknowledge one hundred 
and seventy-five killed and wounded." 

Colonel Hill's report says: "The enemy must have lost some 
three hundred. I could not, without great disparagement of 
their courage, place their loss at a lower figure. It is inconceiv- 
able that five thousand men should make so precipitate a retreat 
without having sustained at least that much of a reverse." 

General Pierce, commanding the Federal troops, says in his 
report* of June 12th to General Butler: "For killed, wounded 
and missing, please refer to my former report." 

The " War of the Rebellion" records, from which the reports 
quoted in this article are derived, contain but one report from 
General Pierce, that of June 12th. 

General Butler's first report, dated June 10th, says: "I am 
informed by him [Geiieral Pierce] that the dead and wounded 
had all been brought off." He adds: "Our loss is very consid- 
erable, amounting, perhaps, to forty or fifty, a quarter part of 
which, you will see, was from the unfortunate mistake, to call 
it by no worse name, of Colonel Bendix." 

General Butler's second report, dated June 16th, says: "It is 
a pleasure to be able to announce that our loss was much less 
even than was reported iu my former dispatch, and appears by 
the official report furnished herewith."* He adds: "I have been 
very careful to procure an accurate account of the dead, wounded 
and missing, in order that I may assure those friends who are 
anxious for the safety of our soldiers and an exact account may 
be given of all those injured. There is nothing to be gained by 
any concealment in this regard. The exact truth, which is to 

»The inclosure is the tabulated return given above, showing eighteen killed, fifty- 
three wounded and five missing. 

108 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

be stated at all times, if anything is stated, is especially neces- 
sary on such occasions." No reason is given by General Butler 
for inchiding in his report this protest against concealment of 
the truth.* 

As will be observed, the reports are contradictory. Colo- 
nel Magruder, after duly ascertaining the number of their 
dead left by the enemy and found by our men upon the field, 
stated that there were eighteen. General Pierce informed Gen- 
eral Butler that " the dead and wounded had all been brought 
off." Again: General Butler's first report set the losses' at, 
"perhaps, forty or fifty." His second report announced that 
the loss (given therein at. seventy-six) was much less than in the 
former dispatch — that is, less than forty or fifty. Taking the 
statements quoted altogether, it would seem that Colonel Hill's 
chivalric method of estimating the enemy's losses for him»is the 
more satisfactory. 


In studying the battle of Bethel, the fact must not be lost sight 
of that the weapons used were different from those of the pres- 
ent day. Otherwise we should be unable to comprehend the 
statement in General Pierce's report that he formed his line of 
battle, apparently with a sense of security, at only eight hundred 
paces from our works, or the statement in Major Randolph's 
report that the advance guard of the enemy remained for ten or 
fifteen minutes at a distance of "about six hundred yards in front 
of our main battery" before fire was opened upon them. 

Although that was less than forty years ago, it is a fact that 
the theory of the instantaneous explosion of gunpowder still 
prevailed ; Armstrong had not invented his gun-jackets of 
wrought iron coils; and the rifled Parrott which played such an 

*The associated press accounts of Jane loth, published in the Northern papers, said : 
"This has been an exciting and sorrowful day at Old Point Comfort." The same papers 
contained a letter dated the same evening from Old Point, which said: "It has been 
ascertained that there were one hundred killed and two hundred wounded. And even 
now it is thought from the scenes witnessed at Portress Monroe that the battle was far 
more sanguinary in its effects than the latter version would indicate. They are still 
bringing in the killed and wounded by boats and other conveyances, as I close this let- 
ter." The Baltimore Sun learned from a passenger on the boat from Old Point that "the 
number of killed and wounded was estimated at Fortress iVIonroe at one thousand at least. 
The fire of the Confederates was extraordinarily fatal." 

The Bethel Eegiment. 109 

important part in the artillery fire at Bethel was merely cast-iron. 
The small arms which were used with such deadly effect by 
Companies A, B, C, G and H, of the North Carolina' regiment, 
were either smooth-bore Springfield muskets, carrying a round 
ball weighing an ounce, or " buck and ball," or they were rifles 
that carried a round bullet quite as innocent as the musket ball 
of pointed tips and hollow-coned bases. It is tVue that French 
chasseurs were armed with a rifle throwing an elongated ball 
with a hollow-coned base as far back as 1840, or thereabouts, 
and that Captain Minie had improved this by adding an iron 
cup to fit into the cone, and that the English had substituted a 
wooden plug for Minie's cup in their Enfield rifle of 1855. But 
we are not a military people, and, in peace, have rarely, if ever, 
as a government, kept abreast of the other civilized nations in 
improved arms, though teaching them many lessons during war. 
There is no reason to believe that at the outbreak of the war of 
1861 the stock of arms owned by the United States was different 
at any of their arsenals from those found in the Fayetteville 
Arsenal, which were of the kind referred to above. 

We find Governor Ellis, on the 25th of May, 1861, notifying 
President Davis that thirty-seven thousand stand of arms in the 
Fayetteville Arsenal (of the kind referred to) were at his dis- 
posal, and we find General Butler, on the 27th of May, in his 
report to General Scott,* appealing to the latter to send him more 
ammunition, especially "buck and ball," suitable to the smooth- 
bore musket, with which "the major part of my command is 
provided." Again, in General Pierce's reportf of Butler's "plan 
of operations" for the Bethel expedition, we find this item: 
"Duryea to have the two hundred rifles; he will pick the men 
to whom they are intrusted." Indeed, the papers of the day 
ridiculed the talk about "improved arms," declaring that it was 
the men (the man behind the gun, we call it now) which was the 
important thing. J 

Major Randolph reports that his navy howitzers were mounted 

•" War of the Rebellion," Vol. II, page 63. 

'flbid.^ page S3. 

tRiohmond Dispatch, June, 1861. 

no North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

upon the running-gear of ordinary wagons, thus seriously inter- 
fering with their turning in the ordinary road, and that the fuses 
for his most effective piece, the rifled Parrott, were already cut, 
and for nothing less than four seconds, too great an interval for 
the distance between the opposing forces at Bethel. The enemy's 
equipment was no doubt more complete, but, with the exception 
of the defects noted by Major Randolph as above, there is no 
reason to believe that either side had the advantage in arms. All 
the armies at that period were armed with muzzle-loaders, except 
that of the Prussians, who had adopted, a couple of decades before, 
a needle-gun, then so clumsy and defective that no other nation 
followed her example. It was 1864 before the Spencer maga- 
zine rifle made its appearance in our war (in the hands of Sheri- 
dan's command). It was not until the same year that the gen- 
eral adoption of breech-loaders was even so much as recom- 
mended for the British army; and Sadowa, which humbled 
Austria, and made the German empire possible because the 
Prussians used their needle-guns and the Austrians their muzzle- 
loaders, was not fought until 1866. Indeed, it was nearly the 
close of the campaign of 1864 before our engineer officers began 
to recognize the change required in field defenses by the use of 
such long-range weapons as we then possessed. These were 
chiefly the Enfield rifle, which had come into use by us some 
thirty months before. 

After the battle of Bethel two more companies were assigned 
to the regiment, as follows: 

Company L— Bertie county — Captain, Jesse C. Jacocks ; First 
Lieutenant, Stark A. Sutton; Second Lieutenant, Francis W. 
Bird; Junior Second Lieutenant, J. J. Speller. 

Company M— Chowan county— Captain, J. K. Marshall; 
First Lieutenant, (Dr.) Llewellen Warren ; Second Lieutenant, 
E. J. Small; Junior Second Lieutenant, Thomas Capehart. 

The Bethel Regiment. Ill 


The history of the First Regiment from this time until the 
date set for its muster out of service, November 13th, was un- 
eventfuly It changed its camp a number of times, and it Sid a 
great deal of drilling, digging and other work on fortifications — 
uncongenial labor for the kind of men who composed its ranks, 
but performed cheerfully and without murmuring. 

On the 22d of August the regiment was moved from York- 
town to Ship Point, a place some eight miles distant, uear the 
. mouth of Poquosin River, and facing the Chesapeake. On the 
3d of September an election was held for a successor to Colonel 
Hill, who had just been promoted (September 1st) to be Briga- 
dier-General. Lieutenant-Colonel Charles C. Lee was elected 
Colonel; Major James H. Lane, Lieutenant-Colonel; and Lieu- 
tenant Robert F. Hoke, of Company K, Major. "The new Ma- 
jor was Second Lieutenant of his company, and had been com- 
mended by Colonel Hill, in his report of the battle of Bethel, 
for "great zeal, energy and judgment as an engineer officer on 
various occasions." He was. a native of Lincolnton, and was 
educated at the Kentucky Military Institute. 

Hill was generally regarded as the officer entitled to the chief 
credit for the victory at Bethel. Indeed, Major Randolph, in 
his admirable report to Colonel Magruder of the operations of 
his artillery, made occasion to say: " I am happy at having an 
opportunity to render my acknowledgments to Colonel Hill, the 
commandant of the North Carolina regiment, for the useful sug- 
gestions which his ^perience as an artillery officer enabled him 
to make to me during the action, and to bear testimony to the 
gallantry and discipline of that portion of his command with 
which I was associated. The untiring industry of his regiment 
in intrenching our position enabled us to defeat the enemy with 
a nominal loss on our side." An officer of the regiment* says, 
as a matter within his knowledge, that it was dne to Colonel 

•Lieutenant J. A. Pemberton, of Company F. 

112 The Bethel Regiment. 

Hill that the stand against Pierce's advancing army was made 
at the strong position (which Hill had intrenched) on the York- 
town side of the creek instead of on the Hampton side. Never- 
theless, Magruder, as the ranking officer, was made a brigadier- 
general on the 17th of June. North Carolina was still the 
Bceotia which unfriendly critics had pictured her in the period 
of agitation preceding the war; and we find that in January, 
1862, out of a list* of ninety-three general officers of the Con- 
federate army, but six (Holmes, Hill, Loring, Gatlin, Rains and 
Branch) were accredited to North Carolina. Of the five full 
generals, none were from that State; of the fourteen major- 
generals, five were ahead of Holmes, our only one; and of the 
seventy-four brigadiers, twenty-one appear ahead of Hill, the 
first North Carolinian in the list. Nevertheless, North Caro- 
lina had so many more troops in the field at that time than 
her proportion, as compared with several other States, that in 
the call for troops made by the Confederate Government in 
February, 1862, her quota was less than half that of the others.f 
Once in the national arena. General Hill rose to great distinc- 
tion. He became a major-general in the course of a few months 
and lieutenant-general in July, 1863. 

On the 6th of September, after having thoroughly fortified 
Ship Point, the regiment was moved to Cocklestown, six miles 
distant from Yorktown and nine miles from Bethel. On the 
9th of September, Mr. John W. Baker, Jr., presented a flag to 
the regiment in behalf of the ladies of Fayetteville, in whose 
honor the camp was then named "Camp Fayetteville." Upon 
the flag the word "Bethel" was inscribed, in accordance with 
the resolution of the State Convention. 

On the 21st of September, Lieutenant-Colonel Lane was elected 
Colonel of the Twenty-eighth Regiment, then being organized 
at High Point. An election for Lieutenant-Colonel to fill the 
vacancy resulted in the election of Captain Joseph B. Starr, of 
Company F. The new Lieutenant-Colonel was a native of Fay- 

*Oharlestoa (S. C.) Courier. 
tFayetteville Observer, February 24, 18C2. 

The Bethel Regiment. 113 

etteville; educated at Middletown Academy, Counecticut; an 
adventurous visitor to California at the age of seventeen, and a 
prosperous wholesale merchant in his native town at the outbreak 
of the war. He was described at the time as "a rigid disciplin- 
arian, but loved and respected by his company." 

The field officers were now as follows: Colonel, Charles C. 
Lee; Lieutenant-Colonel, Joseph B. Starr; Major, Robert F. 
Hoke. In addition to the staff officers named in the first part 
of this article, J. B. F. Boone had become Quartermaster, and 
after him. Lieutenant R. B. Saunders, of Company D. 

Changes were made in the company officers as follows: 

Company A — After the battle of Bethel, Captain Bridgers 
was made Lieutenant-Colonel of Heavy Ai^tiHery (Tenth Regi- 
ment North Carolina Troops), though resigning shortly after- 
wards. On the ,7th of September, First Lieutenant Whitmel 
P. Lloyd was made Captain; Junior Second Lieutenant W. G. 
Lewis was made First Lieutenant, and Kenneth Thigpen, Junior 
Second Lieutenant. 

Company B — Captain "Williams was appointed by the Sec- 
retary of the Treasury Produce Loan Agent for North Carolina, 
and resigned. First Lieutenant Owens became Captain, the 
other Lieutenants went up one grade, and Junius French became 
Junior Second Lieutenant. 

Company F — An election was held on September 30th to 
supply the vacancy caused by the promotion of Captain Starr. 
The next three officers went up one grade each, and Orderly 
Sergeant Benjamin Rush, Jr., was elected Junior Second Lieu- 

Company G — Second Lieutenant John A. Dickson died of 
pneumonia shortly before the regiment was disbanded, and Cor- 
poral M. D. Arrafield was elected to succeed him. 

Company I — Captain Bell resigned August 31, 1861. Sec- 
ond Lieutenant Francis M. Parker was elected to succeed him 
and Carr B. Corbett was elected Junior Second Lieutenant. On 
the 16th of October, Captain Parker was elected Colonel of the 


114 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Thirtieth Regiment, and First Lieutenant M. T. Whitaker be- 
came Captain. 

Company K — Upon the promotion, on September 3d, of Sec- 
ond Lieutenant E. F. Hoke to be Major, Orderly Sergeant Wil- 
liam R. Edwards became Junior Second Lieutenant. Subse- 
quently Second Lieutenant Sumner appears to have resigned,* 
when Lieutenant Edwards became Second Lieutenant, and Ser- 
geant Albert Sidney Haynes succeeded him as Junior Second 

There were no changes in the other companies. 

While the regiment was at Camp Fayetteville, in September, 
a meeting of the officers was held, of which Captain C. M. Avery 
was chairman and Lieutenant Richardson Mallett was secretary, 
to protest against a proposition to change the name of the regi- 
ment. The proceedings of the meeting will be found in the 
appendix to this article. 

On the 8th of October the regiment was moved to Camp Rains, 
four miles distant from Camp Fayetteville ; on the 20th to Bethel 
Church; on the 24th to Yorktown; on the 25th back to Bethel 
Church; and on the 1st of November to Yorktown. On the 8th, 
9th and 11th of November detachments of four companies each 
left Yorktown for Richmond, where the regiment was mustered 
out of service on the 12th, and returned to North Carolina by 
the 13th. 


Moore's "Roster" gives one thousand one hundred and thirty- 
six as the total number of officers and men in the "Bethel Regi- 
ment." There must have been many more than that, for there 
were twelve companies in it, and the newspapers of the day 
reported the ranks as being very full. The records of the Fay- 
etteville Independent Light Infantry, which served as Company 
H of this regiment, show one hundred and nineteen as the num- 
ber serving in that company, whereas the "Roster" gives the names 
of but one hundred and five. The same rate of error in the rest 

*Southern Historical Society's Papers, Vol. XVIII, page 64. 

The Bethel Eegiment. 115 

of the regiment would give a total of one thousand two hundred 
and eighty-seven. 


The First Regiment has been described as a nursery or train- 
ing school for officers. Two circumstances, the one growing out 
of the other, made it so, viz.: its unique personnel and its short 
term of service. The companies composing it had volunteered 
immediately upon the receipt of Mr. Lincoln's proclamation and 
for the long term of service prescribed by the existing State law. 
But the State authorities limited its service to six months,* a pro- 
ceeding due, it is believed, to their recognition of the remark- 
able character of its rank and file. How far the view described 
was justified by the result will appear from the subjoined list of 
members of the First Regiment who became commissioned offi- 
cers in other commands of the Confederate service. As will be 
seen, four of them were general officers. Hill, as already stated, 
reached that rank in September, 1861; Lane attained it in No- 
vember, 1862; Hoke in January, 1863; and Lewis in the summer 
of 1864. 

Upon Colonel Hill's promotion. Major Lane received a com- 
plimentary vote for Colonel and almost a unanimous vote for 
Lieutenant-Colonel. When he was elected Colonel of the Twen- 
ty-eighth Regiment, the First Regiment presented to him a sword 
of honor and other valuable testimonials. He was described by 
the press of the day as "deservedly the most popular man, per- 
haps, in the regiment." He distinguished himself at Hanover 
Court House, in 1862, in extricating his regiment when cut oiF 
by the overwhelming force of Fitz John Porter, and was praised 
by General Lee therefor. Upon the death of General Branch 
at Sharpsburg he was urged by Stonewall Jackson for promotion 
to Brigadier-General. When appointed to that rank, six weeks 
afterwards, he was but twenty-seven years of age, being then 
the youngest general officer in the service. His brigade of North 

•Adjutant-General to Colonel Hill, April 19, 1861. 

116 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-'65. . 

Carolinians became one of the most famous in military history. 
At Spottsylvania, when Hancock overran Johnson's Division 
and took the right wing of Lee's army in rear and enfilade. 
Lane's promptness and military genius and the discipline and 
courage of his brigade stayed the victorious host and threw them 
back upon their reserves. He was, in the campaigns of 1864 
and 1865, the senior brigadier of the "Light Division" of the 
Army of Northern Virginia. Except for the sudden opening 
of the campaign of 1865 earlier than was expected, he would, 
it was understood, have received the rauk, which he had long 
before won, of, a division commander. 

At the outbreak of the war, when the junior officers were in 
the habit of drilling their squads in the streets about the Capitol 
Square in Raleigh, the late Mr. Badger took great interest in 
watching them from his residence. He singled out young Hoke,, 
the Second Lieutenant of the Lincoln company, as the likeliest 
of them all, and often said that he was destined to high com- 
mand. He became Major of the First Regiment in September, 
as we have seen. After the disbandment of the regiment he 
was appointed Major of Colonel Branch's Regiment, which was 
just then being organized, and which became the Thirty-third. 
Upon Branch's promotion in January, 1862, he was promoted 
to be Lieutenant-Colonel. Colonel Avery having been captured 
at New Bern, Lieutenant-Colonel Hoke commanded the regiment 
in the battles about Richmond in 1862. He was promoted to 
be Colonel, and took part in the Second Manassas and Sharps- 
burg campaigns. Upon Colonel Avery's return, he was assigned 
to the command of the Twenty-first Regiment, of Trimble's 
Brigade. This brigade he commanded in the battle of Fred- 
ericksburg with such notable skill that he was appointed Briga- 
dier-General in the succeeding January (1863). On the 17th 
of April, 1864, he won fame by the capture of the fortified town 
of Plymouth and three thousand prisoners. Congress voted him- 
a resolution of thanks, and he was appointed a Major-General,. 
with rank from the date of his victory. 

Upon the organization of the First Regiment, William G. 

The Bethel Regiment. 117 

Lewis was Junior Second Lieutenant of Company A. Upon its 
disband ment he had risen to First Lieutenant. On the 17th of 
January, 1862, he was appointed Major of the Thirty-third Regi- 
ment; on the 26th of April, 1862, he was promoted to be Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel of the Forty-third Regiment; for his services at 
the siege of Plymouth, 1864, he was promoted to be Colonel; 
and for his services in Beauregard's campaign against Butler, 
shortly after, when he commanded Hoke's old brigade, he was 
promoted to be Brigadier-General. He participated in Early's 
victorious march down the Shenandoah Valley to Washington 
and in the subsequent battles with Sheridan. In the retreat 
from Petersburg, in a desperate fight of the rearguard at Farm- 
ville, two days before the surrender at Appomattox, he was 
severely wounded and taken prisoner. This gallant officer par- 
ticipated in thirty-seven battles and heavy skirmishes. 

officers contributed to other commands in the 
confederate service. 


Daniel H. Hill, Lieutenant-General, P. A. C. S.; Robert F. 
Hoke, Major-General^ P. A. C. S.; James H. Lane, Brigadier- 
Oeneral, P. A. C. S.; William Gaston Lewis, Brigadier-General, 
P. A. C. S. 


J. W. Ratchford, Major, A. A. General, P. A. C. S.; E. J. 
Hale, Jr., Major, A. A. General, P. A. C. 8.; J. C. MacRae, 
Captain, General L. S. Baker's Staff (also Major of Battalion in 
Western North Carolina); Charles W. Broadfoot, First Lieuten- 
ant, A. D. C. to General T. H. Holmes (also Lieutenant-Colonel 
First Regiment Junior Reserves); Theo. F. Davidson, Lieuten- 
ant, A. D. C. to General R. B. Vance; Thomas J. Moore, Lieu- 
tenant, Artillery Officer to (general D. H. Hill. 

Surgeon Peter E. Hines, a distinguished physician, became 
Medical Director of the Department of Petersburg, and then, 
by authority of the Secretary of War, was appointed Medical 
Director of the General Hospitals of North Carolina. 

118 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 


Colonels — James H. Lane, Twenty-eighth Regiment; Fran- 
cis M. Parker, Thirtieth; Charles C. Lee, Thirty-seventh; Clark 
M. Avery, Thirty-third; William J. Hoke, Thirty-eighth; James 
K. Marshall, Fifty-second; William A. Owens, Fifty-third; 
Eobert F. Hoke, Twenty-first; James C. S. McDowell, Fifty- 
fourth; Hector McKethan, Fifty-first; Washington M. Hardy, 
Sixtieth; W. G. Lewis, Forty-third; Robert L. Coleman, Six- 
tieth; John H. Anderson, Second Junior Reserves. Total, 14. 

Lieutenant-Colonels — John L. Bridgers, Tenth Regi- 
ment; H. W. Abernathy, Thirty- fourth; Francis W. Bird, Elev- 
enth; John T. Jones, Twenty-sixth; Joseph H. Saunders, Thirty- 
third; Eric Erson, Fifty-second; Alfred H. Baird, Sixty-fifth; 
Joseph B. Starr, Fifth Battalion; Charles W. Broadfoot, First 
Junior Reserves; Whitmel P. Lloyd, Senior Reserves. Total,^ 

Majors — Egbert H. Ross, Eleventh Regiment; Benjamin R. 
Huske, Forty-eighth; Charles M. Stedman, Forty-fourth; James 
R. McDonald, Fifty-first; W. W. McDowell, Sixtieth; James 
C. MacRae, Battalion in Western North Carolina; F. J. Hahr, 
Commandant Conscript Camp; John N. Prior, Senior Reserves,^ 
Inspector Eighth District, Conscript Bureau. Total, 8. 

Adjutants — French Strange, Fifth Regiment; J. C. Mac- 
Rae, Fifth; Stark A. Sutton, Forty-fourth; Richardson Mallett, 
Forty-sixth; E. J. Hale, Jr., Fifty-sixth; W. C. McDaniel, 
Fifty-fourth; John H. Robinson, Fifty-second; Spier Whitaker, 
Jr., Thirty-third; Thomas J. Moore, Fifty-ninth; E. M. Clayton, 
Sixtieth; John W. Mallett, Sixty-first ; Junius French, Twenty- 
third. Total, 12. 

Other Staei' Officers — William R. Edwards, A. Q. M., 
Thirty-eighth Regiment; George W. Wightman, A. C. S., Fifth;. 
J. T. Downs, A. C. S., Sixty-third; George B. Baker, A. Q. M., 
Conscript Camp; John G. Hardy ^of Burke), Surgeon, Sixth 
Regiment; J. Geddings Hardy (of Buncombe), Surgeon, Sixty- 

«In the lists which follow the colonels, lieutenant-colonels, majors and adi-utants of 
the regiments of the line are placed in the order of date of commission; the comnlnv 
ofBcers, alphabetically. ' .u^auj 

The Bethel Eegiment. 119 

fourth; D. McL. Graham, Assistant Surgeon, Thirty-seventh; 
Charles G. Gregory, Assistant Surgeon, Thirtieth; L. L. Warren, 
Surgeon; Jesse H. Page, Chaplain, Seventeenth. Total, 10. 

Non-commissioned Staff — Charles Haigh, Sergeant- Major, 
Sixty-third Regiment; E. P. Powers, Sergeant-Major, Fayette- 
ville Armory Guard. 

Captains — S. B. Alexander, Company K, Forty-second 
Regiment; W. E. Ardrey, K, Thirtieth; M. D. Armfield, B, 
Eleventh; George B. Atkins, B, Fifth Battalion; T. J. Brooks, 

D, Forty-first Regiment; Calvin S. Brown, D, Eleventh; Thomas 
Capehart, Third Battalion; Thomas W. Cooper, C, Elev- 
enth Regiment; E. M. Clayton, K, Sixtieth; D. A. Culbreth, 
C, Fifty-fourth; Lawson A. Dellinger, A, Fifty-second; Alex- 
ander R. Carver, B, Fifty-sixth; W. D. Elma, I, Thirty-seventh; 
J. F. Freeland, G, Eleventh; S. A. Grier, D, Sixty-third; B. F. 
Grigg, F, Fifty-sixth; W. L. Hand, A, Eleventh; A. Sidney 
Haynes, I, Eleventh; H. W. Home, C, Third; Lemuel J. Hoyle, 
I, Eleventh; James R. Jennings, G, Eleventh; G. B. Kibler, 
B, Fifty-fourth; W. J. Kincaid, D, Eleventh; Jesse W. Kyle, 
B, Fifty-second; J. A. McArthur, I, Fifty-first; Robert Mc- 
Eachern, D, Fifty-first; John McKellar, A, Sixty-third; D. 
A. Monroe, K, Thirty-eighth; James H. Morris, F, Forty- 
third; E. R. Outlaw, C, Eleventh; Thomas Parks, B, Elev- 
enth; B. F. Patton, B, Sixtieth; T. W. Patton, C, Sixtieth; 
L. A. Potts, C, Thirty-seventh; Alexander Ray, D, Fifty- 
third; K. J. Rhodes, E, Fifty-sixth; Frank N. Roberts, B, 
Fifty-sixth; David Scott, D, Fifty-third; George Skirven, 
Mallett's Battalion; George Sloan, I, Fifty-first Regiment; 

E. J. Small, F, Eleventh; John F. Speck, G, Fifty-seventh; 
Edward W. Stilt, I, Thirty-seventh; L. B. Sutton, F, Fifty- 
ninth; John M. Sutton, C, Third Battalion; Frank M. Tay- 
lor, G, Thirty-second Regiment; W. B. Taylor, A, Eleventh; 
William T. Taylor, B, Fifty-sixth; John H. Thorpe, A, Forty- 
seventh; Isaac N. Tillett, G, Fifty-ninth; M. C. Toms, A, Six- 
tieth; J. J. Watford, F, Fifty-ninth; W. P. Wemyss, D, Fay- 
etteville Armory Guard; Carey Whitaker, D, Forty-third; Sol. 

120 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

H. White, G, Thirty-second; J. Marshall Williams, C, Fifty- 
fourth; James M. Young, K, Eleventh. Total, 57. 

First Lieutenants — C. W. Alexander, Company A, 
Eleventh Eegiment; W. R. Alexander, I, Sixtieth; John H. 
Anderson, D, Forty-eighth; Thomas W. Baker, T>, Forty-third; 
K. J. Braddy, C, Thirty-sixth; G. W. Buhman, B, Forty-first; 
John A. Burgiu, K. Eleventh; E. M. Clayton, B, Sixtieth; W. 

A. Connelly, A, Avery's Battalion; David A. Coon, I, Eleventh 
Regiment; Thomas C. Fuller, B, Fifth Battalion; David P. 
Glass, K, Thirty-fifth Regiment; Charles Carroll Goldston, H, 
Forty-sixth; Joseph L. Hayes, F, Fifth; A. J. Hauser, D, First; 
H. R. Home, A, Fifth Battalion; W. E. Kyle, B, Fifty-second 
Regiment; H. C. Lowrance, D, Sixtieth; Jarvis B. Lutterloh, 
E. Fifty-sixth; M. S. Marler, B, Fifty-fourth; James McKee, 

C, Seventh; J. P. McLean, H, Fiftieth; J. H. Myrover, B, 
Fifth Battalion; O. P. Pittman, B, Sixty-third Regiment; D. H. 
Ray, A, Fifth; Thomas RufSn, D, Fifty-ninth; Angus Shaw, K, 
Thirty-eighth; Thomas G. Skinner, Fifth Battalion; J. J. Speller, 
Commandant Conscript Camp Guard; Ed. E. Sumner, D, First 
Regiment; R. W. Thornton, B, Fifty-sixth; G. W. Westray, A, 
Forty-seventh; J. S. Wliitaker, D. Forty-third; T. L. Whitaker, 

D, Twenty-fourth; John Whitmore, B, Fifth Battalion; B. 
Franklin Wilson, K, Forty-second Regiment; E. J. Williams, 
I, Thirty-first. Total, 37. 

Second Lieutenants — Marshall E. Alexander, Company 

B, Fifty-third Regiment; W. T. Battley, E, Fayetteville Arm- 
ory Guard; William Beavans, D, Forty-third Regiment; W. 
R. Boon, B, Fifty-first; O. J. .Brittain, D, Eleventh; John W. 
Burgin, K, Eleventh; Charles B. Cook, A, Sixty-third; Au- 
gustus Cotton, E, Seventeenth; G. A. Cotton, E, Seventeenth; 
S. W. Davidson, C, Sixtieth; T. F. Davidson, F, Sixtieth; 
W. T. Dickerson, K, Eleventh; S. H. Elliott; J. P. Elms, I, 
Thirty-seventh; G. H. Gregory, J. C. Grier; P. B. Grier, 
Eleventh; George H. Haigh, Conscript ,Bureau; R. H. Hand, 
A, Eleventh Regiment;' M. M. Hines, B, Twenty-third; James 
W. Huske, B, Fifty-second; Isaac Jessup, B, Fifth Battalion; 

The Bethel Regiment. 121 

R. B. Kerley, B, Fifty-fourth Regiment; J. G. McCorkle, E, 
Eleventh; J. H. McDade, G, Eleventh; D. M. McDonald, 
B, Fifty-sixth; H. A. McDonald, K, Thirty-eighth; McMat- 
thews (of Mecklenburg); James D. Nott, A, Sixty-third; O. 
A. Ramseur, I, Eleventh; Benjamin Rush, B, Fifth Battal- 
ion; J. M. Saville, H, Eleventh Regiment; H. H. Smith, A, 
Fifth; B. W. Thornton, B, Fifty-sixth; J. H. Triplett; J. L. 
Warlick, B, Eleventh; Portland A. Warlick, B, Eleventh; 
R. M. Warlick, K, Forty-ninth; Jones M. Watson, G, Elev- 
enth; James W. Williams, G, Eleventh; G. W. Wills, D, Forty- 
third; Joseph H. Wilson, K, Forty-second; G. W. Worjey, K, 
Eleventh. Total, 43. 

A recapitulation of the foregoing gives: Four general offi- 
cers, seven officers of the general staff, fourteen colonels, ten 
lieutenant-colonels, eight majors, twelve adjutants, ten other staff 
officers, fifty-seven captains, thirty-seven first lieutenants and 
forty-three second lieutenants; total, two hundred and two. From 
this must be deducted the number of names which appear more 
than once. Three of the general officers appear also iu the list of 
colonels; five of the officers of the general staff appear also 
in the regimental and* battalion field and staff, and one of 
them twice; an adjutant appears also in the list of line captains; 
and a lieutenant of a regiment of the line appears in another 
list. Nearly all the .officers enumerated held more than one 
office, by promotion; but it was necessary to repeat only those 
just mentioned. Deducting these eleven, we have a net total 
of one hundred and ninety-one commissioned officers con- 
tributed by the First Regiment to other commands in the Con- 
federate service — being more than the full complement required 
for four regiments. Of these officers, the commands of more 
than two-thirds of them formed part of the regular establish- 
ment of the Army of Northern Virginia: that is to say, the 
division of D. H. Hill and the brigades of D. H. Hill, Lane, 
Hoke and Lewis were of that army — as were also the commands 
of three of the officers of the general staff above mentioned; of 
ten of the colonels; of five of the lieutenant-colonels; of three of 

122 North Cakolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

the majors; of ten of the adjutants; of six of the other regimental 
staff; of forty-five of the captains; of twenty-five of the first lieu- 
tenants; and of twenty-nine of the second lieutenants. Deduct- 
ing from this total of one hundred and fo%, five names 
which have been counted twice therein, we have a net total of 
one hundred and thirty-five commissioned officers contributed 
by the Bethel Regiment to that immortal army. 


The list of members of the First Regiment who were present 
at the battle of Bethel and who also surrendered at Appomattox 
must, in the nature of things, be short, for death and disabling 
wounds and other of the adverse chances of war would leave but few 
survivors of those who found their way into the Army of Northern 
Virginia. For example, to go no further than the grade of colonel, 
it will be found that of the fourteen officers of that i-ank con- 
tributed by the First Regiment to other commands, five (Lee, 
Avery, Marshall, Owens and McDowell) were killed or mor- 
tally wounded in battle, while two others (Parker and W. J. 
Hoke) were disabled by wounds and retired, and another (Lewis, 
who had reached the grade of general) was, as described above, 
wounded and captured two days before the surrender. Again, 
there are no doubt omissions in the list which has been obtained, 
though every effort has been made to secure the names of all. 
Subjoined is a list of those who have been reported by the com- 
pany historians. The names (including General Lane's) are ar- 
ranged alphabetically, and the company or command in which 
each served at Bethel and at the surrender are set opposite: 

John Beavans, private Company I — Seargeant Company D, 
Forty- third. 

D. McL. Graham, private Company H — Assistant Surgeon 

E. J. Hale, Jr., private Company H — Major, A. A. G. 
(Lane's staff). 

W. E. Kyle, private Company H — First Lieutenant Com- 
pany B, Fifty-second. 

The Bethel Regiment. 123 

James H. Lane, Major and Lieutenant-Colonel — Brigadier- 

J. A. McKay, private Company H — private Williams's 

John H. E-obinson, Sergeant Company H — Adjutant Fifty- 

Charles M. Stedman, private Company H — Major Forty-third. 

W. B. Taylor, Corporal Company C — Captain Company A, 

J. S. Whitaker, private Company I — First Lieutenant Com- 
pany D, Forty-third. 

Spier Whitaker, Jr., private Company D — Adjutant Thirty- 

J. Marshall Williams, private Company H — Captain Com- 
pany C, Fifty-fourth. 


The facts collated in this history of the First North Carolina 
Regiment exhibit its remarkable character. They show that it 
was the natural outgrowth of the conditions from which it sprung; 
that it expressed the peculiarities of the people whom it repre- 
sented, their gentleness^ in manner, their resoluteness in deed; 
that the celerity and completeness with which it was organized 
and equiped have no parallel in our history; that it spilled the first 
blood in battle in defense of the cause which its State was almost 
the last to embrace; that, while it had never before heard a hos- 
tile bullet, it exhibited the discipline and behaved with the steadi- 
ness of veterans at Bethel Church; that its victory there was 
won against odds which represented the numerical superiority of 
the North over the South; that in this, and in other respects, its 
triumph in that initial battle produced consequences of the most 
far-reaching kind, possibly holding Virginia in the Confederacy, 
and certainly reshifting the theatre of war; that it raised the 
hopes of the South to the highest pitch and correspondingly de- 
pressed those of the North; that its contributions of trained sol- 
diers to the rest of the army constitute a unique feature of mili- 
tary history; and that in this, and in all other respects, it deserved 
the place assigned it by the authorities of the State as Fugleman 
of the regiments. 

124 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 


Adjutant-General's Orders Organizing the 
First Regiment. 

Reference has been made to orders from the Adjutant- Gen- 
€ral's office issued on April 19th, May 9th, May 12th, May 
15th and May 16th, organizing the regiment. They were as 

follows : 

Adjutant- General's Office, 

Raleigh, April 19, 1861. 

Colonel:— You are hereby commanded to organize the Orange Light 
Infantry, Captain Ashe; Warrenton Guards, Captain Wade; Hornet 
Nest Eifles, Captain Williams; Enfield Bluea, Captain Bell; Lumberton 
Guards, Captain Norment; Duplin Rifles, Captain Kenan; Charlotte 
Grays, Captain Ross; Thomasville Rifles, Captain Miller; Granville 
Grays, Captain Wortham; Columbus Guards, Captain Ellis, into a regi- 
ment to be designated the "First Regiment of North Carolina Volun- 

The cadets of the North Carolina Military Institute can be attached to 
this regiment with the consent of their parents and guardians. The 
seat of war is the destination of the regiment,, and Virginia, in all prob- 
ability, will be the first battle ground. 

The service of this regiment will not exceed six months, but the men 
should be prepared to keep the field until the war is ended. The gray 
or the blue blouse will be recognized as a suitable uniform. Arms are 
now in Raleigh for the use of the regiment, and the men will be fur- 
nished with them promptly. The regiment will be moved into Virginia 
as soon as possible, but will not be led into battle until the field officers 
are of the opinion that the men are fit for such duty. You will order an 
election for field oflBcers of the regiment on Friday, the third day of 

The cause of Virginia is the cause of North Carolina. In our first 
struggle for liberty she nobly and freely paured out her blood in our 
defense. We will stand by her now in this our last efibrt for independ- 

By order of the Governor: 

J. F. Hoigi:, 

Adjutant- Oeneral. 
Colonel D. H. Hill, 

Commanding Camp of Instruction, 

Raleigh, N. C. 

The Bethel Regiment. 125 

Adjot ANT- General's Office, 

Ealeigh, May 9, 1861. 
{General Orders No. 7). , 

The following companies of volunteers now stationed in this city are 
hereby organized into a regiment, to be mustered into the service of the 
State agreeably to such regulations as shall hereby be determined upon, 

1. Edgecombe Guards, Captain John L. Bridgers. 

2. Enfield Blues, Captain D. A. Bell. 

3. Hornet Nest Rifles, Captain Lewis S. Williams. 

4. Burke Rifles, Captain 0. M. Avery. 

5. Buncombe Rifles, Captain W. W. McDowell. 

6. Southern Stars, Captain W. J. Hoke. 

7. Randlesburg Rifles, Captain A. A. Erwin. 

8. LaFayette Light Infantry, Captain W. G. Matthews. 

9. Orange Light Infantry, Captain Richard J. Ashe. 

The companies will be ari'anged in the regiment and the relative ranks 
of the officers will be fixed when the same shall have been mustered into 

The commanding oflicer of the camp of instruction will hold an elec- 
tion for field ofiicers of the above regiment at 10 o'clock a. m. the 11th 

The companies not already at the camp will repair there at the time 

designated, where they will be stationed until further orders. 

* *********** 

All orders heretofore issued inconsistent with the foregoing are hereby 

Arms will be issued to the troops as soon as they shall have been or- 
ganized into regiments. 

By order of the Governor: J. F. Hoke, 

A djutant- General. 

AdjutaNt-Genekal's Office, 

Raleigh, May 12, 1861. 
{Special Orders No. S). 

The following return of the election for field officers for the regiment 
of volunteers organized at the camp of instruction in this city, pursuant 
to General Orders No. 7 frofti this oflace, dated May 9, 1861, is published 
for the information of all concerned: 

Camp op Instkuction, 

Raleigh, May 11, 1861. 
To General J. F. Hoke, Adjutant- General: 

Sir: — In accordance with instructions, I hereby transmit the result of 
the election this day held for field ofiicers of the First North Carolina 
Regiment : 

126 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

For Colonel— D. H. Hill received 652 votes; Charles 0. Lee, 39; C. 0. 
Tew, 2; scattering, 3. 

For Lieutenant-Colonel— Charles 0. -Lee received 657 votes; Mr. Bur- 
gwyn, 29; D. H. Hill, 13; Major Stokes, 2; scattering, 4. 

For Major — James H. Lane received 610 votes; Mr. Lovejoy, 83; scat- 
tering, 5. Respectfully submitted, 

Charles C. Leb, 

Major Camp of Instruction, Acting Colonel. 

The officers elected as above will enter upon their duties accordingly, 
and all persons placed under their command will respect and obey them 

By order of the Governor: J. F. Hoke, 

A djutant- General. 

Officers commissioned as per above date, the 11th. 

Adjutant-General's Office, 

Raleigh, May 15, 1861. 

Sir: — You are hereby detailed to muster in the troops of the First 
Regiment this afternoon at four o'clock p. m. 

A justice of the peace will be requested to be present to administer 
the necessary oath. 

J. F. HOKB, 

Colonel C. C. Lee, 

Camp of Instruction, 

Raleigh, N. C. 

Adjutant-General's Office, 

Raleigh, May 16, 1861. 
{Special Orders No. 5)- 

Colonel: — The Randlesburg Rifles, Captain Erwin, not having the 
number of men required by law, are detached from the First Regiment, 
and the Fayetteville Independent Light Infantry,* Captain Huske, are 
ordered to supply their place, and will take the same position in the 
regiment occupied by that company. 

Major Lane is detached as mustering oflicer to muster into the service 
of the State the Fayetteville Light Infantry. 

The LaFayette Light Infantry, Captain Starr; the Fayetteville Inde- 
pendent Light Infantry, Captain Huske, and the Southern Stars, Cap- 

*This company and the LaFayette Light Infantry were detained, by orders at Fav- 
etteviUe, for service in the capture of the United States Arsenal at that place which was 
.effected on the 22d of April. They were put to guard duty over that great property until 
May 1st, when the LaFayette left for Ealeigh, and May 9th, when the Independent com- 
pany followed. For this reason they were not included in the earlier orders for organi- 
zation of the regiment. ° 

The Bethel Regiment. 127 

tain Hoke, will leave for Richmond, Va., on Saturday morning, and 
will have two days' rations of meat and bread for each member of the 
company. The remaining companies will move for the same point on 
Monday or Tuesday next, and will have a like supply of provisions pre- 
By order of the Governor: J. F. Hokb, 

A djutani- Oeneral. 


A detachment of fifteen cadets from the North Carolina Mili- 
tary Institute defended the howitzer under Lieutenant Hudnall, 
and acted with great coolness and determination. 

I cannot speak in too high terms of my two field officers, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Lee and Major Lane. Their services have 
been of the highest importance since taking the field to the 
present moment. My thanks,' too, are due, in an especial 
manner, to Lieutenant J. M, Poteat, Adjutant, and Lieutenant 
J. W. Ratchford, Aide, both of them cadets of the North Caro- 
lina Institute at Charlotte. The latter received a contusion in 
the forehead from a grape-shot, which nearly cost him his life. 
Captain Bridgers, Company A; Lieutenant Owens, commanding 
Company B ; Captain Ross, Company C ; Captain Ashe, Com- 
pany D; Captain McDowell, Company E; Captain Starr, Com- 
pany F; Captain Avery, Company G; Captain Huske, Company 
H; Lieutenant Whitaker, commanding Company I; Captain 
Hoke, Company K, displayed great coolness, judgment and 
efficiency. Lieutenant Gregory is highly spoken of by Major 
Lane for soldierly bearing on the 8th. Lieutenants Cook and 
McKethan, Company H, crossed over under a heavy fire to the 
assistance of the troops attacked on the left. So did Lieutenant 
Cohen, Company C. Lieutenant Hoke has shown great zeal, 
energy and judgment as engineer officer on various occasions. 
Corporal George Williams, privates Henry L. Wyatt, Thomas 
Fallon and John Thorpe, Company A, volunteered to burn the 
house which concealed the enemy. They behaved with great 
gallantry. Wyatt was killed and the other three were recalled. 

128 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Sergeant Thomas J. Stewart and private William McDowell, 
Company A, reconnoitered the position of the enemy, and went 
far in advance of our troops. Private J. W. Potts, of Company 
B, is specially mentioned by his company commander; so are 
Sergeant William Elmo, Company C; Sergeants C. L. Watts, 
W. H. McDade, Company D; Sergeant J. M. Young, Corporal 
John Dingier, privates G. H. A. Adams, R. V. Gudger, G. W. 
AVerley, John C. Wright, T. Y. Little, J. F. Jenkins, Company 
E; E. W. Stedman, M. E. Dye, H. E. Benton, J. B. Smith, 
Company F; G. W. Buhmann, James C. MacRae, Company H. 

Casualties — Private Henry L. Wyatt, Company K, mortally 
wounded; Lieutenant J. W. Ratchford, contusion; private Coun- 
cil Rodgers, Company A, severely wounded; private Charles 
Williams, Company A, severely wounded; private S. Patterson, 
Company D, slightly wounded; private William White, Com- 
pany K, wounded; private Pet^r Poteat, Company G, slightly 

Permit me, in conclusion, to pay a well-deserved compliment 
to the First Regiment North Carolina Volunteers. Their 
patience under trial, perseverance under toil and courage under 
fire have seldom been surpassed by veteran troops. Often work- 
ing night and day, sometimes without tents and cooking uten- 
sils, a murmur has never escaped them to my knowledge. They 
ha\^e done a large portion of the work on the intrenchments at 
Yorktown, as well as those at Bethel. 

Had all of the regiments in the field worked with the same 
spirit there would not be an assailable point in Virginia. After 
the battle they shook hands affectionately with the spades, call- 
ing them "clever fellows" and "good friends." 

The men are influenced by high moral and religious senti- 
ments, and their conduct has furnished another example of the 
great truth that he who fears God will ever do his duty to his 

The Bethel Regiment. s 129 

IFrom the FayeiteviUe Observer, October 7, 1861.'] 


At a meeting of the ofHcers of the First Regiment North 
Carolina Volunteers, now stationed at Camp Fayetteville, near 
Yorktown, Va., on motion, Captain C. M. Avery was called to 
the chair, and Lieutenant R. Mallett appointed secretary. 

The chairman explained the object of the meeting to be to 
take the sense of the officers of this regiment relative to the 
change of our title. On motion of Lieutenant Thigpen, Cap- 
tains R. J. Ashe, W. W. McDowell and Lieutenant B. R. 
Huske were appointed a committee to draft resolutions for the 
action of the meeting. The committee withdrew and in a short 
time returned and reported the following preamble and resolu- 
tions, which were unanimously adopted, and ordered to be for- 
warded to the Richmond Dispatch and Examiner, the North 
Carolina State papers, and the Charleston Mercury, for publi- 
cation : 

"Whereas, on the 28th day of September, A. D. 1861, to 
our, surprise and mortification, an order from Colonel J. G. 
Martin, Adjutant-Generill of the State of North Carolina, was 
read, directing that this regiment should in future be known as 
the Nineteenth Regiment of North Carolina Volunteers; there- 
fore, be it 

"Resolved, That having been iha first regiment from North 
Carolina to enter the State of Virginia; the first regiment from 
any State to meet and repulse the invader; the first regiment to 
receive the approbation of our countrymen by resolutions of their 
national and State couucils; that having been intrusted by the 
people of North Carolina with a flag upon whose folds is in- 
scribed 'The First Regiment of North Carolina' by the hands 
of ouf country-women; and that having been exposed to the dan- 
gers of battle and endured the hardships of camp, in this our 
only campaign, as the First Regiment, we do hereby enter, in 
behalf of those whose graves may be seen, humble though th«y 

130 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

be, in sight of their trials and labors; in the name of those whose" 
enfeebled health attests their patience and fortitude; and in the 
name of those who yet live, proud of their appellation and of 
the associations of which it reminds them, our most earnest pro- 
test against said change. 

"Resolved, That we have shown by all of our actions since the 
call for volunteers our earnest desire to promote the good of the 
cause, and that while we are still willing to make further sacri- 
fices for the same plirpose, we are not willing to surrender our 
name to minister to the caprice of any one, or to subserve the 
convenience of a few office clerks, and that we will never submit 
to such an imposition until we have exhausted every means of 
redress consistent with our eificiency and character." 

C. M. Avery, 

R. Mallett, Chairman. 


Note. — It is probable that if the action recorded in the above proceed- 
ings had been Ijnown, the Bethel Regiment would have been placed first 
in Moore's "Roster," in accordance with the fact that it was the first 
regiment organized by the State. It is placed in the "Roster" after the 
Eleventh Regiment, which succeeded it. 


The Atlanta Journal in 1881 contained an article concerning 
the "Flag of Bethel," from which the following extracts will be 

"The color company of the First North Carolina Regiment 
was Company E, formerly the Buncombe Riflemen, of Asheville. 
The flag they carried into Big Bethel fight was the first one bap- 
tized in blood in a field engagement during the war. This flag 
was made by Misses Anna and Sallie Woodfin, daughters of 
Colonel Nicholas Woodfin; Misses Fannie and Mary Patton, 
Miss Mary Gaines, Miss Kate Smith, and perhaps other young 
ladies of Asheville, N. C, and presented to the Buncombe Rifle- 
men. The flag was made of red, white and blue silk, the mate- 

The Bethel Regiment. 131 

rial contributed from the dresses of tiie young ladies. Miss 
Anna Woodfin was chosen, in behalf of the young ladies, to pre- 
seiit the flag, her father making the presentation speech. Cap- 
tain W. W. McDowell, in behalf of his company, received it. 
The Misses Woodfin are cousins of the late lamented Henry W. 
Grady. This flag was taken to Richmond, and when the Rifle- 
men became the color company of the regiment it became the 
regimental flag of the first fight of the war. On the return 
home Captain E. M. Clayton, now of Clarksville, who had suc- 
ceeded Captain McDowell in the command of Company E, 
brought the flag with him, and has sacredly kept it through 
many vicissitudes until the present day. After it came out of 
service Miss Anna Woodfin wrought on its white bar with blue 
silk the word 'Bethel.'" 

The flag which was presented to the First Regiment by the 
ladies of Fayetteville on the 9th of September, 1861, and upon 
which the word "Bethel" was inscribed in accordance with the 
resolution of the Convention, is now in possession of Mr. E. R. 
McKethan, of Fayetteville. 


The Fayetteville Independent Light Infantry, which went 
into the service as Company H of the First Regiment, was the 
oldest military organization in the South. It is the oldest in the 
United States, with the exception of the Ancient and Honorable 
Artillery Company of Boston. It was formed in 1793 to assi,st 
President Washington against Citizen Genet, of France, and has 
had an unbroken organization since. It served in the war of 
1812, at the same time maintaining a company of "substitutes" 
in the field at its own expense; it was of the escort of General 
Lafayette on his visit to Fayetteville in 1825; it sent a detail of 
its members to the Mexican war ; it served in the war between 
the States, as we have seen, as Company H, First North Caro- 
lina Regiment; and it served in the recent war with Spain as 
Company A, Second North Carolina Volunteers. 

132 North Carolina Troops, 1861 -'65. 

In 1819, by special act of the Legislature, for its long and 
distinguished services, its commanders, from that time forward, 
were endowed with the rank of major, and its four next officers 
with that of captain, a distinction conferred upon no other com- 
pany in the State. It represented North Carolina at the Phila- 
delphia Centennial in 1876, at the Yorktown Centennial in 
1881, and at the Constitutional Centennial at Philadelphia in 
1887; and was one of the two organizations from North Caro- 
lina in the line at the Dewey celebration in New York, Septem- 
.berSO, 1899. 


[Extract from Major J. C. MacRae's Address on the Eighty-first 

The organization of your company was not lost after its return 
from Yorktown; and on February 22, 1862, an election of offi- 
cers was had, and Peter M. Hale, who had been a private 
through the whole tour of service in the field, was elected Major 
Commanding. This was a just tribute to one who had, in the 
intimate association of camp-life, endeared himself to all his 
comrades. In March, 1862, the company again offered its ser- 
vices in defense of our liberties. It was then composed of about 
forty men; but before its services were accepted most of the 
members had volunteered in other commands and gone to the 
front. So on the 1st of April, 1862, when the Clarendon Guards 
went to Fort Fisher, they carried in their ranks the commander 
and twelve men of your company — all that was left. 


In addition to the large list of officers contributed by the First 
Regiment to other commands in the Confederate service it is 
believed that the majority of the remainder of the regiment re- 
enlisted, though it has been impossible to trace them all. Al- 
though the Eleventh Regiment was officially known as the suc- 
cessor of the First Regiment, and numbers of its officers came 

The Bethel Eegiment. 133 

from the latter, but a small portion of its rank and file was thus 
derived. The authorities relied on for the history of the sev- 
eral companies indicate that the men of companies A, B, C, D, G, 
H, I, K, L and M were scattered in their re-enlistments through 
diiferent regiments. Captain Ross, of Company C, and some of 
his officers went into the Eleventh Regiment as Company A, 
but Moore's "Roster" shows but three privates common to the 
two companies. Company E (Buncombe) seems to have gone 
largely into the Sixtieth Regiment and other commands in the 
Army of Tennessee. Company F went largely into Starr's Bat- 
tery, Company B, Fifth (Thirteenth) Battalion. 

The first death in the regiment was that of private Julius 
Sadler, of Company B, who fell from the platform of the cars 
on the way from Richmond to Yorktown, May 24th, 1861, and 
was instantly killed. Private Hilton, of the same company, be- 
came one of Hampton's famous scouts. 

Of Company C (the Charlotte Grays) not a member was of age. 

Lieutenant David A. Coon, of Company K, was wounded 
nine times, and still carries several balls in his body. Private 
James M. Abernathy, of the same company, became Assistant 
Surgeon to Surgeon General Warren in the State service, and 
private J. F. Reinhardt became a noted scout. 

[The writer is indebted to General Lane for valuable documents; to 
General W. G. Lewis for items concerning Company A; to Major J. G. 
Harris, Captain W. B. Taylor and Lieutenant J. H. Wilson for items 
concerning Companies B and C; to Doctor Kemp P. Battle and David 
McCauley, Esq., for those for Company D; to Hon. Theodore F. David- 
son and B. F. Patton, Esq., for Company E; to Colonel J. B. Starr for 
Company F; to Judge Avery for Company G; to Captain John H. Robin- 
son for Company H; to Colonel F. M. Parker for Company I; to Profes- 
sor Charles L. Coon and Sheriff (Lieutenant) David A. Coon for Com- 
pany K; to Hon. F. D. Winston and Captain L. B. Sutton for Company 
L, and to W. M. Bond, Esq., Mr. J. R. B. Hathaway and Captain Thomas 
Capehart for Company M.] 

E. J. Hale. 

Faybttevillb, N. C, 

April 9, 1900. 


1. H. A. Brown, Colonel. 5. L. C. Latham, Major. 

S. M. S. Stokes, Colonel. 0. John Benbury, Captain, Co. A. 

3. J. N. Harrell, Lieut.-Colonel. 7. T. D. Boone, Captain, Co. F. 

4. T. L. Skinner, Major. 8. John A. Morgan, 1st Lient., Co. A. 

!). J. C. Scarborough, Sergeant, Co. I. 


By colonel HAMILTON A. BROWN. 

"While we envy not others their merited glory, we feel it to be our 
bounden duty to North Carolina, to our gallant soldiers, and to our dead 
heroes, that we should be fairly represented in history's story." — Gen- 
eral Eamsbue. 

This regiment was organized at the race track near Warren- 
ton in the spring of 1861, Governor Ellis appointing Mumford 
Sidney Stokes, Captain of Cpmpany B, from Wilkes county, 
Colonel; Matthew W. Ransom, of Halifax county, Lieutenant- 
Colonel, and John A. McDowell, of Bladen county. Major. 

Colonel Stokes had been an officer in the United States Navy 
for more than ten years. He was also Major of a North Caro- 
lina regiment in the Mexican war, and was presented with a 
handsome sword by his soldiers after that war. 

Colonel Ransom was a distinguished statesman and lawyer of 
Weldon, and was promoted to Brigadier-General during the war. 

Major McDowell was a successful business man of Bladen 

The other field and stafiF officers by succession and appoint- 
ment were as follows: John A. McDowell, Colonel from Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel; H. A. Brown, Colonel from Lieutenant-Colonel; 
John A. McDowell, Lieutenant-Colonel from Major; H. A. 
Brown, Lieutenant-Colonel, promoted from Company B; J. N. 
Harrell, Lieutenant-Colonel, promoted from Company F; John 
A. McDowell, Major; T. L. Skinner, Major, promoted from 
Company A; J. S. Hines, Major, promoted from Company C; 
J. N. Harrell, Major, promoted from Company F; L. C. La- 
tham, Major, promoted from Company G. 

136 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Adjutants — J. S. R. Miller, Caldwell county; French 
Strange, Cumberland county; T. H. W. Mclntire, New Han- 
over county; L. J. Curtis, Wilkes county; John A. Morgan, Per- 
quimans county. 

Sergbant-Majors— T. H. W. Mclntire and W. G. Allen, 
Wm. H. Proffett and J. Edward Purvis. 

Quartermasters — G. L. Dudley, J. D. Boone. 

Commissaries — J. W. Hackett, Owen Fennell, R. A. Spain- 
hour. " 

Surgeons— H. I. Macon, C. J. Gee, N. M. Scales, L. C. 

Chaplains — J. H. Spainhour, J. K. Howell,W. R. Gwaltney. 

COMPANY officers. 

Company A — Chowan County — Captains: T. L. Skinner, J. 
A. Benberry, F. W. Bond, T. L. Johnston. First Lieutenants: 
J. A. Benbury, J. L. Bratten, L. C. Benbury, T. L. Johnston, 
J. A. Morgan. Second Lieutenants: L. C. Benbury, T. L. 
Johnston, J. A. Morgan, A. R. Stamer, J. D. Williams, W. H. 

Enlisted men, 121. 

Company -B — Wilkes County — Captains: M. S. Stokes, J. B. 
Gordon, H. A. Brown, T. S. Bouchelle. First Lieutenants: M. 
A. Parks, T. S. Bouchelle, J. A. Hampton, W. W. Vannoy, L. 
J. Curtis. Second Lieutenants: T. S. Bouchelle, J. A. Hamp- 
ton, W. W. Vannoy, J. W. Peden, T. C. Miller. 

Enlisted men, 170. 

Company C — New Hanover County — Captains: J. S. Hines, 
H. L. Fennell, W. H. Thompson. First Lieutenants: H. L. 
Fennel, W. H. Thompson, J. J. McMillan, T. H. W. Mclntire. 
Second Lieutenants: Owen Fennell, W. H. Thompson, J. J. Mc- 
Millan, O. R. Scott, Charles Marsteller. 

Enlisted men, 164. 

Company D — Orange and Lincoln Counties — Captains: E. 
M. Scott, J. W. Williamson. First Lieutenants: Edward Sum- 

First Regiment. 137 

ner, A. P. Houser. Second Lieutenants: A. J. Houser, Wm. 
Howard, A. W. Cheek, P. H. Grady, J. G. Scott, D. E. Stokes. 

Enlisted men, 167. 

Company E — New Hanover County — Captains: J. A.Wright, 
F. W. Moore. First Lieutenants: J. L. "Wboster, J. G. Wright. 
Second Lieutenants: J. G. Wright, G. L. Dudley, R. F. Lang- 

Enlisted men, 140. 

Company F — Hertford and Northampton Counties — Captains: 
J. N. Harrell, Thomas D.Boone. First Lieutenants: W. S. Shep- 
pard, J. P. Jenkins, Second Lieutenants: C. F. Lyop, J. P. 
Jenkins, T. D. Boone, J. F. Adkins, L. C. Lawrence. 

Enlisted men, 156. 

Company G — Washington County — Captains: L. C. Latham, 
N. J. Whitehurst. First Lieutenants: N. J. Whitehurst, J. A. 
Latham. Second Lieutenants: J. A. Latham, T. S. Holliday, 
T. N. Bishop, J. M. Hargett. 

Enlisted men, 152. 

Company H — Martin County — Captains: R. W. Rives, J. S. 
R. Miller, Alfred Mizel. First Lieutenants: N. B. Fagan, J. 
R. Mizel. Second Lieutenants: E. Burrows, J. R. Mizel, J. H. 
Keen, J. M. Guyther. 

Enlisted men, 152. 

Company I — Wake County — Captains: J. H. Foote, J. H. 
Fowler. First Lieutenants: H. J. Fowler, W. D. Scarborough, 
J. A. Harlsfield. Second Lieutenants: H. J. Fowler, J. H. 
Terrell, H. L. Patterson, M. F. Scarborough, E. A. Carver. 

Enlisted men, 158. 

Company K — Halifax County — Captains: S. H. Gee, W. H. 
Day. First Lieutenants: A. L. Pierce, C. Branch. Second 
Lieutenants: W. R. Williams, John Wynn, D. E. Stokes, R. J. 

Enlisted men, 157. 

In July, after the organization was perfected, the regiment 
was ordered to Richmond, and was assigned to General Holmes' 
Brigade, at Brooks' Station, near the mouth of Acquia Creek. 

138 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

While here Company B was detached and ordered to the 
mouth of Acquia Creek to man the heavy guns in the batteries 
stationed there, and was engaged in several skirmishes with the 
enemy's gun-boats. In the spring of 1862 a portion of the North 
Carolina Troops, iucluding this regiment, was ordered to Golds- 
boro to meet an advance of the enemy from New Bern. About 
this time Lieutenant-Colonel Ransom was elected Colonel of the 
Thirty-fifth Regiment, and accepted; Major McDowell was made 
Lieutenant-Colonel; Captain Skinner, of Company A, Major. 
The regiment having been again ordered to Richmond, arrived 
on the ibattlefield of Seven Pines just after the battle had 
been fought. Here it remained for several weeks, chiefly on 
picket duty, with an occasional skirmish with the enemy, and 
lost several of its men. 

While here a new brigade was formed, composed of the First 
and Third North Carolina, the Fourth and Forty-fourth Geor- 
gia, and Brigadier-General R. S. Ripley was assigned to its 
command, Major-General D. H. Hill being in command of the 

SEVEN days' battles. 

On the 26th of June, after a circuitous and fatiguing night 
march, the regiment arrived in the vicinity of Mechanicsville. 
Here a detail of one company from each regiment was made, and 
Major DeRosset, of the Third, was placed in command. The 
object of this select battalion was to clear the way and examine 
the bridge across the Chickahominy. (A mine was thought to 
have been placed under it by the enemy). In order to under- 
' stand their duties more fully, the officers were sent to the top of a 
hill near by, from which could be seen the route intended, etc. 
On this hill, and in range of the enemy's guns, a group of dis- 
tinguished Confederates were assembled, composed of President 
Davis, Mr. Randolph (Secretary of War), Generals Lee, Long- 
street and D. H. Hill, waiting to hear General Jackson's guns 
on the north side of Mechanicsville before ordering an advance. 
General Jackson being delayed. General Lee ordered an ad- 
vance of this portion of the line after hearing the guns of Gen- 

First Regiment. 139 

eral A. P. Hill at Meadow Bridge. After the battalion alluded 
to had examined and crossed the bridge, and cleared the field of 
skirmishers, Ripley's Brigade, having been selected as the assault- 
ing column, was ordered across the bridge and to form line of 
battle. It advanced to the attack in front of the splendid artil- 
lery of the enemy strongly posted across the pond at Elyson's 
Mills. The slaughter was terrific, yet the regiment pressed 
forward in the face of this murderous fire for more than half a 
mile, advancing steadily to what seemed inevitable destruction, 
till it reached the pond, when it was ordered by the right flank 
and took shelter in a skirt of woods below. In this assault Col- 
onel M. S. Stokes was mortally wounded, Lieutenant-Colonel 
McDowell badly wounded and Major Skinner killed. Captains 
James A. Wright, of Company E; R. W. Rives, of Com- 
pany H; four Lieutenants, and more than half of the men of 
the regiment were killed and wounded. On the 27th, the 
enemy having retreated, this regiment, with the army, pursued 
him in the direction of Cold Harbor by way of Bethsaida Church. 
There being now no field officers and but few company officers 
in the regiment. Major W. R. Cox, of the Second Norih Caro- 
lina Regiment, was ordered to fake command in this battle. 

In the charge that followed through the dense ,undergrowth 
this regiment became separated from its brigade, and acted as a 
support to Garland's Brigade. It lost several men, killed and 
wounded. The following day was spent in burying our own and 
the Federal dead. 

The next day the Chickahominy was crossed at Grape Vine 
Bridge and the march continued in the direction of White Oak 
Swamp via Savage's Station. Here, after a sharp skirmish, the 
enemy was repulsed. From this point the regiment marched in 
the direction of Malvern Hill by way of Quaker road, and turn- 
ing to the right after passing the church, was soon under fire 
from the enemy's guns on Malvern Hill. 

The troops taking shelter under the crest of the hill, formed 
line of battle and were ordered by General Hill to assault the 
strong natural position of the enemy on the plateau. Arriving 

140 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

at the crest and in full view at close range of the enemy's infan- 
try and artillery, this regiment, together with the third, went by 
the left flank, in perfect order, and took advantage of a cut in 
the road. At this place that gallant soldier, Colonel Gaston 
Meares, of the Third, was killed while bravely leading his regi- 
ment. General Charles Winder, of the Stonewall Brigade, then 
assumed command of this and the Third Regiment. 

Night came at last to end this bloody and disastrous struggle, 
the enemy retreating. The next day the dead of these two regi- 
ments (First and Third) were found nearer to those of the enemy 
than were those of any other troops on this part of the line, 
proving that they approached nearer the enemy's line of battle 
than any of the regiments that fought on this part of the field. 
The regiment suffered heavily iu this engagement. Among the 
killed was Captain John Benbury, of Company A, beloved and 
mourned by the entire regiment. At this battle Captain Brown, 
of Company B, was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel, and Cap- 
tain J. S. Hines, of Company C, Major. The regiment remained 
for several days in this locality, Major-General D. H. Hill's 
Division, of which it was a part, having been left to watch 
McClellan's movements. While here, Lieutenant-Colonel 
Brown and Major Hines were detailed to go to Raleigh to pro- 
cure the regiment's quota of conscripts. They returned with 
about five hundred. These men proved to be excellent material 
for soldiers, brave and willing, as was fully proven on many a 
bloody field afterward. After being assigned to their proper 
companies and sufficiently drilled, the regiment, with the divis- 
ion, was moved by rail to Orange Court House. 


About the 9th of August the regiment moved in the direction 
the army had taken, passing the battlefield of Cedar Mountain, 
and was in reserve at Second Manassas and antilly. After- 
wards it crossed the Potomac at Point of Rocks and camped 
near Frederick, Md., where it remained for several days, then 
crossed the South Mountain at Crampton's Gap and remained 

First Regiment. 141 

at Boonesboro until the 14th, when it participated in the battle 
at the Gap, its position being on the right of the Braddock road. 
At one time during this battle six companies were hotly engaged, 
losing several men. 


After dark the army withdrew and moved in the direction of 
Sharpsburg, where it arrived on the morning of the 15th, tak- 
ing position iu a cornfield on the ridge north of the town. Here 
we fared abundantly on green corn and pumpkins, till the firing 
of the enemy's artillery in the afternoon admonished us of more 
important matters. 

Oq the following day this regiment, with the brigade, while 
supporting a battery, was subjected to a heavy fire from the 
enemy's artillery across the Antietam. At daylight on the 
17th the firing began at close range. The troops were soon 
moved by the left flank, at double-quick, and occupied a posi- 
tion at a burning farm building. After a hard battle of an 
hour, General Ripley having been wounded in the neck, the ad- 
vance to the front and left was ordered by Colonel Doles, of the 
Fourth Georgia, now in command. The troops obeyed with 
alacrity, manifesting more than their usual determination and 
efficiiency, crossed a formidable fence and moved through a skirt 
of woods in which General Mansfield, commanding a corps of 
the enemy, was killed. After an irresistible effort on our part, 
the Federals were driven from, and we gained possession of, the 
celebrated cornfield. There being now a lull in the firing, three 
distinct lines of the enemy could be plainly seen approaching. 
As they advanced they were reviewed by a Federal officer, with 
hat in hand, riding rapidly in front of each line. We were near 
enough to hear the angry and determined cheers of his men. 

On, on, this vast army approached our thin ranks. Word 
was passed: "Fix bayonets, boys!" We nerved ourselves for 
the attack, which was murderous beyond description, con- 
tinuing for more than an hour and a half. Ripley's Brigade, 
after bearing the brunt of the battle, was ordered to retreat, the 

142 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

enemy not pursuing. The manner of this. retreat was slow and 
in order and under General Hill's personal supervision. Observ- 
ing an abandoned caisson, he, Hill, ordered the soldiers to 
remove it from the field, remarking: "We will not leave the 
enemy so much as a wheel." The retreat was continued to the 
Dunkard Church on the Hagerstown road, where, after being 
supplied with animunition, our lines were reformed, the enemy 
making no further demonstrations on that day. The following 
day the troops rested on the field, in plain view of the enemy's 
lines, and during the night crossed the swollen Potomac. 

The loss of the regiment in this battle was more than fifty 
per .cent, of the number engaged, including some of its best 
officers and men, among the number Captain Bouchelle, of Com- 
pany B. After resting for several weeks in the lower valley, 
the army moved by way of New Market Gap, passing Orange 
Court House in the direction of Fredericksburg. While in 
bivouac for the night near Gordonsville, General Hill issued 
an order requiring company commanders to see that the bare- 
foot men made moccasins for themselves of the hides 'just taken 
from the beeves. The next morning on the march General Hill 
observed one of the soldiers, private Vanhorne, of Company 
H, without shoes or moccasins, and immediately arrested. Captain 
Miller of that company for disobedience of orders. Captain Mil- 
ler demanded and obtained an investigation, which showed that he 
had until a late hour, and after marching twenty-one miles, as- 
sisted his men in carrying out the General's order; that at mid- 
night private Parker, of Company B, arrived in camp bare- 
foot, cold and hungry, and was naturally attracted to the butch- 
er's-pen where, learning of the recent order of Hill, he went to 
work at once to shoe himself. As he wore number twelve 
shoes, it took so large a portion of the material that there was 
none left for private Yanhorne. Upon this statement of facts 
Captain Miller was released. Be it stated, however, to the 
credit of both Parker and Vanhorne, that their shoeless feet had 
marked the bloody dust on many a hard fought field. 

The regiment and brigade continued its march to Port Royal 
on the Rappahannock, where it remained for several days. 

First Regiment. 143 

first battle of fredericksburg. 

'On the morning of the 12th of December the troops moved 
back in the direction of Fredericksburg, marching the greater 
part of the night and reaching Hamilton's Crossing on the 
morning of the 13th. In this battle this regiment was in the sec- 
ond line until the evening of the first day, when it took posi- 
tion in the first line. The enemy being driven back, the Con- 
federates lay on the field, anticipating another furious battle, 
and " bitterly thought of the morrow." Before dawn the line 
was advanced to the railroad, within three hundred yards of the 
enemy, but no blood was shed this day, and but one shot was 
fired. This was from a small cannon of the enemy, aimed at 
a Georgia Lieutenant in the act of robbing a dead Federal in 
front of picket-lines. He soon beat a hasty retreat, amidst the 
cheers and jeers of both armies. The enemy sent a flag of truce 
on the 14th, asking permission of General Jackson to remove 
their dead and wounded, who were lying in heaps on that por- 
tion of the railroad occupied by this regiment. The permission 
was promptly granted by the General. The troops were em- 
ployed during the dark and rainy night following in tearing 
up the railroad — an extremely difficult task — as orders were 
giv^n to accomplish this work in silence, as well as in the dark, 
" without lights and without noise." The enemy retreated, and 
thus ended the first battle of Fredericksburg. 

After this the regiment built and occupied winter quarters on 
the Rappahannock, near Skinker's Neck. There the winter of 
1862-'63 was spent on picket duty along the river. While sta- 
tioned at this point the regiment, which had been in Major- 
General D. H. Hill's Division, was now changed to Jackson's 
old division, commanded by Major-General Trimble, and our 
gallant Georgia comrades, the Fourth and Forty-fourth Regi- 
ments, were exchanged for the Tenth, Twenty-third and Thirty- 
seventh Virginia Regiments. These regiments, with the First 
and Third North Carolina, formed a new brigade, and Brigadier- 
General R. E. Colston was assigned to command it. It will be 
seen from this statement that the First and Third North Caro- 

144 . North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

lina Regiments had not been, up to this time, brigaded with 
other North Carolina troops, nor were they so brigaded during 
the war. Without the slightest reflection on our gallant friends 
and comrades in arms — the Georgians and Virginians — we do 
assert that it was both unfortunate and unjust that these regi- 
ments were not immediately associated with their own State 
troops, for these two being the only regiments from North Caro- 
lina in this, the Stonewall Division, trouble and discomforture 
were necessarily entailed by such an arrangement. Our mails 
were miscarried, we were often neglected, and sometimes forgot- 
ten, in the distribution of army stores, clothes, provisions, etc. 
The field of promotion was also narrowed, and our achievements 
on the field frequently shared by others. Governor Vance made 
repeated efforts to effect a more satisfactory arrangement, with- 


On the 29th of April this regiment left its camp at Skinker's 
Neck and marched to Hamilton's Crossing, thence in the direc- 
tion of Chancellorsville. On the 2d of May, Saturday morning, 
while waiting in the road on the east of Chancellorsville, the 
members of this regiment witnessed an interview between Gen- 
erals Lee and Jackson. These generals went apart from their 
staff ofiBcers and sat down upon the leaves. General Lee un- 
folding a map that he had taken from his pocket, and pointing 
out to General Jackson with a pencil on the map, who nodded 
assent. In a short while General Jackson arose and called 
Major Pendleton, his chief of staff, and through him ordered the 
troops to move by the left flank. Then commenced that grand 
strategic movement that has since been the wonder and admira- 
tion of the world. Rapidly marching around the enemy's lines 
to his right and rear, crossing the plank-road and arriving on 
the old turnpike about 4 p. m., two and a .half miles west of 
Chancellorsville, having marched in all more than fifteen miles 
in a few hours, and about five miles in a direct line from the 
starting point in the morning, Jackson's Corps had been de- 
tached from the main body of the army to make this attack. 

First Regiment. 145 

On this march regimental commanders were ordered |o march 
in rear of their regiments with a guard of strong men with fixed 
bayonets, to prevent straggling. Immediately on arrival at the 
stone road the troops were formed in three lines of battle, Col- 
ston's Brigade being in the second line. The order to advance 
was obeyed with promptness. Rushing on towards the enemy's 
camp, the first scene that can be recalled was the abundant sup- 
ply of slaughtered beef and rations cooking. 

We captured piles of fat knapsacks and piles of fatter Dutch- 
men. Private Alexander Faw, of Company B, remarked that 
the thick woods through which we were passing was like a strainer, 
letting the lean and the lesser Dutchmen escape, while we secured 
the fat ones'. The Federal General Schimmelfennig's Brigade 
suffered heavily as prisoners. In the language of a North Caro- 
lina General, " Hungry men seized provisions as they passed the 
camp, and rushed forward eating, shouting and firing." The 
whole affair was a wild scene of triumph on our part. Thus 
continued the pursuit until night, when the enemy made a stand 
within a mile of the Chancellor house. Here great confusion 
ensued. The two front lines having become mingled, were 
halted and reformed. This regiment, being in better allignment 
than most of the others. General Jackson in person ordered it to 
advance as skirmishers in front of the line. Shortly after being 
thus deployed it was charged by a company of Federal cavalry, 
which proved to be a part of the Eighth Pennsylvania. The 
greater portion of them were unhorsed and captured. This was 
a critical period in the battle, and General Jackson seemed un- 
usually anxious. He gave instructions to the Colonel of this 
regiment to fire upon everything coming from the direction of 
the enemy. 

These instructions were turned over to Colonel Avery, of the 
Thirty-third, who relieved this regiment, and obedience to them 
resulted in that most distressing calamity, the wounding of Gen- 
eral Jackson by his own men. On being relieved, this regiment 
assembled on the road, rejoined its brigade, and protected itself 
as well as possible from the terrific cannonading of the enemy 

North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

that followed. On Sunday, the 3d instant, the regiment was 
formed on the right of the road, and, advancing, captured the 
first line of the enemy's works — a barricade of huge logs with 
abatis in front. The portion of these works that crossed a ravine 
and swamp, and which was favorable to the occupancy of the 
enemy, was assaulted three times by the Confederates before it 
was finally held. This regiment, with the major part of the 
brigade, participated in the last two of these charges. It was 
then that General J. E. B. Stuart, who was in command (Gen- 
erals Jackson and Hill having both been wounded on the even- 
ing before) ordered the whole line forward. The enemy's earth- 
works in front were carried by storm and many pieces of artil- 
lery which occupied them were captured. We were now in 
full view of the Chancellor house, and the captured guns were 
turned on the fleeing enemy. Soon the Chancellor house was 
in flames, and a glorious victory perched upon our banners. 

The Confederate line was again moved forward and executed 
a wheel to the left, bringing this regiment and brigade immedi- 
ately to the Chancellor house, hence this brigade, which had 
been commanded since early in the day by Lieutenant-Colonel 
Brown (Captain Latham being in command of the regiment, 
Colonel McDowell and Major Harrell having been wounded), 
was the first of the Confederate troops to reach the Chancellor 
house, Lieutenant-Colonel Brown being the fifth brigade com- 
mander that day, as per his report in " War Records." During 
one of these assaults alluded to above this brigade became de- 
tached from the division, and when it arrived at the Chancellor 
house was between two of Major-General Rodes' brigades. On 
the 6th the brigade marched to U. S. Ford on the Rappahannock. 
While here the enemy was permitted by General Lee to lay a 
pontoon-bridge and send over several hundred ambulances to 
the battlefield of Chancellorsville for his wounded. The officers 
of this regiment and brigade acted on the part of the Confed- 
erates to carry on these negotiations, and General Sharp, Deputy 
Provost Marshal of the Army of the Potomac, acted on the part 
of the enemy. A whole week was consumed in effecting this 

First Regiment. 147 

object, after which the brigade was removed and operations 
resumed. The troops now returned to the viciuity of Freder- 

Early in June, soon after the Chancellorsville battle, Major- 
General Edward Johnson was assigned to command the Stone- 
wall Division, and General George H. Stewart to command Cols- 
ton's Brigade. The division was now composed of Paxton's, 
or the First Brigade, known as the Stonewall Brigade, Jones', 
or the Second Brigade, and George H. Stewart's, the Third 


From its bivouac near Fredericksburg the army now marched 
in the direction of Winchester, the Second Corps crossing the 
Blue Ridge at Chester Gap. Arriving at Winchester, it partici- 
pated in the battle of the 13th and 14th of June, which was 
very disastrous to the Federals und Milroy. After the battle on 
the evening of the 14th, Johnson's Division was ordered to inter- 
cept and capture the routed enemy, and for this purpose the di- 
vision marched all night, and by a circuitous route by way of 
Jordan's Springs, arrived at daybreak near Stephenson's Depot, 
on the Valley pike. 

During a sharp battle at this place, in which the regiment was 
sorely pressed. Lieutenant John A. Morgan, with a squad of men, 
saved the day by taking command of and operating a Confed- 
erate battery which this regiment was supporting, after nearly 
all the regular artillerymen had been killed or wounded. 

Several hundred of the enemy threw down their guns and 
surrendered. Portions of four regiments, with their colors, sur- 
rendered to this regiment. At this stage of the battle the regiment 
volunteered to reconnoiter the field to the Carter house, a mile 
distant, and succeeded in capturing two hundred horses. It 
was then that General Johnson ordered the regiment to mount 
these horses and pursue Milroy, who had escaped in the 
direction of Harper's Ferry. It failed in this object, how- 
ever, and, after a day's travel of many miles, returned to 
camp with no further victory to boast or booty to claim; but, 

148 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

on the' contrary, entirely satisfied with its equestrian expedi- 
tion, and realizing that there could be better things in a soldier's 
experience than to "jiue the cavalry." In this last battle the 
regiment lost the gallant Captain Miller, of Company H, for- 
merly Adjutant of the regiment. On the 18th the regiment 
crossed the Potomac at Shepherdstown and encamped near the 
Dunkard Church, on the battlefield of Sharpsburg. While here 
the Eev. George Patterson, the Chaplain of the Third North 
Carolina Regiment, having been solicited, read the burial service 
over the noble heroes of the First and Third Regiments who 
had fallen in this battle in 1862 and were buried near this 
church. This solemn and touching scene will ever be one 
among the memorable incidents in the annals of the war. 


From this camp the regiment, with the brigade, marched via 
Hagerstown to Chambersburg, Greencastle and McConnellsburg 
to the vicinity of Carlisle and on to Gettysburg, having marched 
twenty-five miles the last day, but arrived too late to participate 
in the engagement of the first day. The position of the regiment 
the next day was about two miles east of the town, the regiment 
being the left of the brigade and extreme left of the army. 

The greater portion was deployed as sharp-shooters. In the 
charge that took place at 4 p. M. this regiment, after crossing 
Rock Creek, assembled on the right, and with the brigade as- 
saulted and captured the enemy's works at the southeast base of 
Gulp's Hill. Lieutenant Green Martin, of Company B, was the 
first to enter the works, where he received a mortal wound. At 
this juncture the officer in command of this regiment sent a mes- 
sage to Major-General Johnson to the effect that with re-inforce- 
ments he could cut the Baltimore pike. Smith's (Extra Billy) 
Virginia Brigade was sent, but arrived too late to accomplish 
the desired end. On the morning of the 3d the second line of 
the enemy's works, strongly posted on Gulp's Hill, was assaulted. 
The fighting here was desperate, the enemy using his artillery at 
close range and with great effect. The attack failed and we fell 

First Regiment. 149 

back to the works that we had first captured and at night re- 
treated to the position occupied on the first day, west of the town, 
leaving most of our dead, thirty-eight in number, on the field. 
"Victory deserted the Southern arms on the gory field of Gettys- 
burg. Though ten thousand of her heroic dead and wounded 
lay scattered from bloody Gulp's Hill to stony Round Top, yet 
the ghastly sacrifice did not attain the end for which it was 
made. Standing amidst the wreck and carnage of that fatal 
field, Lee realized for the first time the loss of his great captain, 
Jackson, upon whose banners victory ever perched. This was 
the last offensive movement that the Gonfederacy was able to 
sustain. Next day we turned our faces toward Virginia, and 
after several skirmishes and hard marches, arrived at Williams- 
port, Md., and forded the swollen Potomac on the 15th, the 
men having to put their cartridge-boxes on their bayonets to keep 
them above the water. After various marches via Front Royal 
and Page Valley, and with some skirmishing, we reached Orange 
Gourt House early in August, participated in the Bristow cam- 
paign in October, by having an occasional skirmish with the 

On the 27th of November this regiment was engaged in a 
short, sharp fight at Payne's Farm, where the commanding 
officer of the regiment, Lieutenant-Golonel Brown, was shot 
through the hand, when lock-jaw threatened, and the com- 
mand was turned over to Gaptain Latham. In this battle 
the enemy was driven from the field after a loss of several 
of the regiment's best men. At Mine Run the regiment was 
engaged in several skirmishes, but in no general battle. Thus 
ended the campaign of 1863, and the regiment built winter 
quarters near the Rapidan, and did picket duty along the 
river at Mitchell's Ford during the winter of 1863-64. 
Golonel McDowell having now resigned, Lieutenant-Golonel 
Brown was promoted to Golonel, Major Harrell to Lieutenant- 
Golonel and Gaptain Latham to Major. The regiment was now 
thoroughly reorganized and the vacancies filled with competent 
company officers, carefully selected, all of them an honor to their 

150 North Carolina Troops, 18 61-65. 

State, as subsequent events bore ample testimony. The perfect 
discipline and efficiency attained by this regiment during this 
winter, and the high compliment afterwards paid it on the bat- 
tlefield of the Wilderness by Lieutenant-General Ewell and 
Major-General Johnson, were due in a great degree to tl^p efficient 
management and co-operation of Lieutenant-Colonel Harrell and 
Major Latham, not only on the field, but to their assistance in 
training and drilling the men in camp. Credit is also due to 
the faithful assistance of competent and willing company officers, 
several of whom, among them Captains Boone, Thompson, Day^ 
Johnson, Mizell and others, had been promoted from the ranks, 
and were veterans of many a bloody field in previous campaigns. 
E,ev. W. R. Gwaltney, Chaplain of the regiment, wrought a good 
work here also. A large chapel was constructed, in which regu- 
lar services were held for the soldiers. He also established a. 
school for them, which did much to improve their condition in 
every way. 


On the 4th of May camp was broken and the regiment, with 
the brigade and division, marched in the direction of Locust 
Grove and met the enemy on the evening of the 15th in the first 
day's battle of the Wilderness, where, after a hard fight, a por- 
tion of the regiment captured two pieces of artillery and more 
than one hundred prisoners in an opening on the old stone road. 
The regiment had witnessed and had taken part in the capture 
of many batteries, but the manner of this capture was both novel 
and thrilling. The Colonel of the One Hundred and Forty- 
sixth New York, Jenkins, whose regiment was opposite in the 
enemy's line, being killed, his command gave way and sought 
protection in a gully in rear of the battery. A portion of the 
First Regiment, Lieutenant O. R. Scott being one of the lead- 
ing spirits, suddenly emerged from a thicket of pines and at- 
tacked the battery on the flank. Here the fighting was desper- 
ate, clubbed-guns and bayonets being used. -"Twas claw for 
claw, and the devil for us all." Lieutenant Shelton, command- 
ing this battery (Battery D, New York Light Artillery), Cap- 

First Regiment. 151 

taiu Wlnslow having been wounded, at last surrendered two 
guns, the other two escaping. This portion of our regiment, 
having crossed the road and obliqued too far to the right, was 
now in rear of the enemy's lines opposed by General Rodes on 
the right of the road. At length General Rodes succeeded in 
routing this portion of the enemy's line and a perfect stampede 
ensued. We could only avail ourselves of the above-named 
gully, from which we had just captured so many of the enemy, 
while this vast herd of fleeing Federals came rushing through 
and over us without firing a gun or speaking a word. While 
we were yet in this temporary concealment, Lieutenant-Colonel 
Lightfoot, of the Sixth Alabama, in pursuit of the routed foe, 
dashed up to this battery, mounted the guns and, with flag in 
hand, claimed the capture. We in turn rose up from this now 
famous gully and, to his astonishment and disappointment, 
proved to him that the prize and the honor were ours. The 
remaining portion of the regiment, with the brigade, arrived in 
time to assist in reclaiming the battery from Colonel Lightfoot 
and the Sixth Alabama. The ene'my being re-inforced, made 
another advance, and we were in turn driven back to our first 
position, leaving the guns between the lines. We, however, 
removed them from the field on the night of the 6th, after the 
firing had ceased. 


On the night of the 7th the movement was commenced by 
the right flank and the march was continued throughout the 
next day, the 8th, through the dust, heat and smoke (the woods 
being on fire), the regiment arriving in the evening near 
Spottsylvania Court House. The enemy was marching on a 
road nearly parallel with ours, and where the roads came 
together, at sundown, a brisk engagement took place. While 
going into this action, on the right by file into line, color- 
bearer W. H. Lee was decapitated by a shell. Captain 
Thompson picked up the colors, and bore them until the 
regiment had finished the movement and taken- its place in 

152 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

line. Just before advancing a volunteer was called for to bear 
the colors in the battle. A stripling, with gosling voice, tat- 
tered jacket, ragged trousers and powder-burnt face, in the im- 
mediate presence of the murderous legions of Hancock, and bear- 
ing the thenceforth honored name of Reams, stepped to the front 
and said : "I'll take the ilag, Colonel," and the flag, its folds still 
dripping with the warm blood of noble Willie Lee, was deliv- 
ered into his hands. Lieutenant-General Ewell, who had wit- 
nessed the tragic death of gallant Lee, inquired: "What youth 
is that who has left his father's fold and come here and assumed 
the duties of a veteran?" On being told that it was John 
Reams, of Company F, he said that he would gladly approve 
any recommendation that might be made for his promotion, but 
the 12th came before the promotion, and on that day the regi- 
ment was captured by the enemy. Color-bearer Reams, deter- 
mined not to surrender the flag, tore it from the staff and carried 
it in his bosom to a Northern prison. 

The night of the 8th and the day of the 9th were spent in 
building works. On the 10th, General Doles' works having 
been captured immediately on the left, this regiment and brigade 
were sent to his assistance. After a most sanguinary battle of 
two hours, in which we lost some of our bravest and best men. 
Lieutenant Larkin Curtis among the number, the works were 
recaptured and we returned to our position in line. The regi- 
ment rested on the 11th. On the morning of the 12tb, dark 
and rainy, a fitting prelude to a day that was dark in the fullest 
sense of the term, the enemy made a desperate assault on the 
salient angle occupied by Jones' Brigade, this regiment being 
immediately on the right of it. For a short time the fighting 
was desperate. The terrific onslaught of this vast multitude 
was irresistible, there being a rectangular mass of twenty thou- 
sand Federal troops, not in line of battle, but in column of regi- 
ments doubled on the centre, supported by a division on each 
flank, in all more than thirty thousand troops concentrated against 
this one point. The portion of the works assaulted by this for- 
midable colnijin was little more than four hundred yards wide. 

First Regimemt. 153 

The Confederate troops occupying this angle were Jones' Brigade 
and the First Regiment, numbering about two thousand. The 
clash of arms and the murderous fire around this bloody angle are 
indescribable. Every one who was present will ever remember 
the wreck and the anguish of that dark and direful day. Let 
it also be remembered that this regiment did its whole duty here, 
as on all other occasions; that it did all that mortal man could 
do, and proved even in defeat true to its State and country. All 
but about thirty of the whole regiment were captured, the Col- 
onel wounded and captured and recaptured three times; the last 
time from the enemy's ambulance corps, who, in turn, were 
made prisoners, and bore him to the Confederate rear instead 
of the Yankee rear, as was their intention. A hickory tree, 
said to be sixteen inches in diameter, was cut down by min- 
nie balls alone and fell near our works. From this time until 
the close of the war the regiment was a mere company, but pre- 
served its organization, and was, with the Third, transferred to 
Cox's Brigade and participated in all the battles in which that 
brigade was engaged between Spottsylvania and Richmond. 


About this time General Early .was assigned to command the 
Second Corps, and was ordered to Lynchburg to meet Hunter's 
raid, at which point the corps arrived on the 18th, and after 
some skirmishing the enemy withdrew during the night and 
was driven from this portion of Virginia, leaving his artillery 
and a portion of his train. General Early then marched in the 
direction of Staunton, passing Lexington; the cemetery in which 
General Jackson had been buried lay on the right of the road 
which we traveled. "We passed into the cemetery with muffled 
drums, field officers dismounting, bands playing funeral dirges, 
banners drooped and arms reversed. A mound covered with 
beautiful June flowers, a flag-staff standing near, told the men 
who had followed him wherever he had led that beneath that 
unostentatious pile of valley soil lay the body of Stonewall 
Jackson. A hush as deep as midnight fell upon those men in 

154 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

their ragged gray, and the eagle eyes of the veterans grew moist, 
as they thought of the glory they had won under the leadership 
of the most unique soldier of the age." From this point Jthe 
army marched in the direction of Washington City by way of 
the Valley and Monocacy Junction, near Frederick, where abat- 
tle took place, the enemy being greatly damaged. Next day, 
after a long march through the dust and heat, the regiment and 
the army reached Silver Spring, in view of the dome of the Capi- 
tol, where, after some further skirmishing. General Early find- 
ing himself confronted by an overwhelming force and his flank 
threatened, withdrew to the Valley by way of Leesburg and 
Snicker's Gap. General Early now organized a corps of sharp- 
shooters from the different regiments in the Second Corps, this 
regiment furnishing its quota, and its Colonel was appointed to 
command the corps of sharp-shooters thus formed. 

After this the sharp-shooters were engaged in almost daily 
skirmishes with the enemy, and took part in the battles of Win- 
chester, August 17th; Cliarlestown, August 21st; Smithfield, 
August 29th; Bunker's Hill, September 3d, and in the bloody 
and disastrous battle of Winchester, September 19 th, in which 
the veteran General Rodes, who had ever been equal to occasion, 
was killed, and also some of our bravest and best officers and 
men, the true and genial Captain Tom Boone, of Company F, 
being among the wounded in this unfortunate battle. In this 
engagement the Confederates, ten thousand in number, met thirty 
thousand of the enemy. General Early retreated and took posi- 
tion at Fisher's Hill, where he was again overpowered, and re- 
treated up the Valley to Waynesboro. The Confederates being 
re-inforced, returned down the Valley, and marched, on the 
night of the 18th of October, around the end of the Mansanutton 
mountain, crossed the Shenandoah at Bowman's Ford, and at- 
tacked the enemy at daylight in his rear, the sharp-shooters cap- 
turing twelve pieces of artillery before the main body arrived. 
This strategy on the part of General Early was pronounced by 
military critics to be equal, or even superior, to that of General 
Lee at Chancellorsville. Oa account of overwhelming odds, the 

First Regiment. 155 

Confederates were prevented from following up their advantages, 
and our decided victory of the morning was turned into a signal 
defeat before the day was over. A portion of this regiment and 
the sharp-shooters were under the immediate command of Gen- 
eral Ramseur, who, collecting his veterans behind a stone fence, 
and fighting like a lion, in this his last battle, was mortally 
wounded. Although this regiment had never been in his com- 
mand it had, as if by accident, been thrown with him in many 
bloody battles, and his undaunted courage and heroic conduct 
inspired many a faltering spirit to revive and "rush on to victory 
or to death." A patriot, a hero, a martyr! 

"Out of its scabbard, never hand 
Waved sword from stain as free." 

The army again retreated up the Valley, and after the defeat of 
Sheridan's Cavalry at Rhode's Hill, near Mt. Jackson, the Val- 
ley campaign of 1864 ended. After this the Second Corps of 
the Army of Northern Virginia returned to Petersburg and took 
up winter quarters within a few miles of the city. 

About the middle of February, 1865, the First, with the 
other troops of the corps, moved south of Petersburg, to near 
Sutherland's Depot. Here the regiment remained until about 
the middle of March, when the troops were ordered into the 
trenches in front of Petersburg, and there it remained until the 
night of the 24th of March, when that portion of the regiment, 
with the sharp-shooters which had been engaged in the assault 
and capture of Fort Stedman before daylight, as a portion 
of the assaulting column, including its commander, Colonel 
Brown, was captured by the enemy, under the command of 
General McLaughlen, but was shortly afterwards recaptured, 
and in turn captured General McLaughlen and his com- 
mand. General McLaughlen asked permission to surrender 
his sword to General Gordon. Permission was granted, for 
the reason that it was not certain that he was a prisoner, or 
would be long, as captures and recaptures were so frequent. 
Upon his surrendering his sword to General Gordon, he was 

156 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

moved back to the Confederate rear and was safe, a prisoner. 
After this the fort was stubbornly held by the Confederates 
against great odds for more than four hours, when, by a sudden 
rush on the part of the enemy on the right, the lines were closed 
and the greater part of the sharp-shooters, together with Colonel 
Brown, their commander, were cut off and forced to surrender. , 


The march from Petersburg to Appomattox was but a series 
of engagements until the memorable day of the 9th of April. This 
brigade was now commanded by that veteran soldier. General W. 
R. Cox, who, as his men were retiring, ordered a halt, and the com- 
mand was given: " Right about, face! " It was promptly obeyed, 
and once more, and for the last time, these few ragged, foot-sore 
and half-starved North Carolinians stood in the strength of their 
invincible manhood, opposed to the men they had met and had 
driven back on many a bloody field. Once more the command rang 
out in the clear, firm voice of the intrepid Cox: "Ready, Aim, 
Fire!" And the last volley fired by the Army of Northern 
Virginia was by North Carolina troops, this regiment among the 
number. "Defeated, but not dishonored." And so should we, 
as true sons of Carolina, in the education of our children, teach 
them to ever refuse that savage lesson that " Might makes right." 
Teach them that 

"Right lives in a thousand things; 
Its cradle is its martyr's grave, 
Wherein it rests awhile until 
The life that heroisms gave 
Revives again at God's own will, 
And rights the wrong." 

Note.— This imperfect sketch of the First Regiment has been written 
from memory and such memoranda as could be collected. Much assist- 
ance has been rendered by Captain T. D. Boone, a member of the regi- 
ment. Also, acknowledgments for suggestions and favors are due Judge 
Walter Clark and Colonel T. S. Kenan. 

H. A. Brown. 

Columbia, Tenn., 

April 9, 1900. 


1. William E. Cox, Colonel. 5. D. W. Hurtt, Major. 

2. Charles C. Tew, Colonel. 6. W. M. Norman, Captain, Co. A. 

3. John P. Cobb, Colonel. 7. W. T. Faircloth, Captain and Assistant 
4: George L. Kirby, Surgeon, Q. M. 


By MATT. MANLY, Captain Company D. 

The Second Regiment was organized with the following offi- 
cers of the field and staff: 

Chaeles C. Tew, Colonel. 
William Pkeston Bynum, Lieutenant-Colonel. 
William R. Cox, Major. 
Nicholas Collin Hughes, Adjutant. 
William T. Fairgloth, Quartermaster. 
Louis Hilliaed, Commissary. 
W. H. CouETS, Surgeon. 
Geoege L. Kieby, Assistant Surgeon. 
' Stewaet Devane, Assistant Surgeon. 
Rev. Dr. Alfred A. Watson, Chaplain. 

The commissions of the field officers of the Second Regiment 
were dated May 8, 1861, and those of the original company 
officers May 16, 1861. 

Dr. Courts was soon succeeded by Dr. James B. Hughes, and 
Dr. Devane by Dr. L. H. Stith. 

Dr. Hughes, after two years of arduous service in attending 
the men through the dreadful diseases of the camp, when fever 
and pneumonia swept away so many, and through the campaign 
of the first two years, was promoted to Surgeon of the brigade. 
The survivors of the Second have a most grateful feeling toward 
him and the highest respect for his skill and devotion. 

Dr. George L. Kirby succeeded Dr. Hughes, and remained 
with us until the regiment was greatly reduced in numbers, when 
he was given a more important post. He gave most faithful atten- 
tion to every duty, and whether under the fire of the enemy's guns, 

158 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

ministering to the wounded, or soothing the last moments of the 
poor fellow dying with fever, he was the same loyal friend. 

N. Collin Hughes served as Adjutant until the death of Col- 
onel Tew, when he was promoted to the staff of General Petti- 
grew, and was killed at Gettysburg. He was a leader among 
the high-spirited gentlemen of the Second. His handsome 
presence and charming manners made him a delightful compan- 
ion, and his superb courage a noble comrade in arms. 

Dr. Stith made a most efficient Surgeon, notwithstanding that 
he had lost an arm. He now lives at Suffolk, and had two sons 
in the army in Cuba. 

Rev. Dr. Watson, our Chaplain, besides his attention to his 
clerical duties, gave valuable services as a scout. His informa- 
tion of the topography of the country was of great value to our 
commanding officer. He had the profound respect of every 

Company A — New Hanover Cown^y-r-Captain, Edward D. 
Hall. This company was transferred to the artillery, and did 
duty on the Cape Fear under Captain Calvin Barnes. Captain 
Hall became Colonel of the Forty-sixth North Carolina Troops. 
His place and designation was taken by a company of fine fellows 
from Surry — Captain, James B. Waugh; Lieutenants, W. .M. 
Norman, Benjamin F. Bray, W. O. T. Banner. 

Captain Waugh was mortally wounded at Chancellorsville, 
and died May 28, 1865. His company was one of the first in 
the charge, being well in front, and his red-lined cloak made 
him a conspicuous mark. Lieutenants Norman and Banner took 
their men so far to the front that Norman fell badly wounded 
and Banner into the hands of the enemy. Officers and men, 128. 

Company B — Wilson County — Captain, John Howard; Lieu- 
tenants, John C. Gorman, Calvin Barnes, Orrin Williams, 
William Howard, Robert E. Calder, Garry Fulghum, B. J. 
Barnes, L. B. Boyette, W. G. Ferrell. 

Captain Howard was mortally wounded at Sharpsburg, Sep- 
tember 17, and died October 4, 1862. 

Second Regiment. 159 

Calvin Barnes was appointed to the command of Company A, 
and transferred with the company. 

John C. Gorman then became Captain, which rank he held 
to the end. He was wounded several times. His last wound 
was received near Petersburg, in April, 1865. 
Orrin Williams was promoted, and transferred. 
The company was greatly indebted to Lieutenant Robert E. 
Calder for its discipline and proficiency in drill. Lieutenant 
Calder was a cadet of the Hillsboro Military Academy. He 
was a very popular officer, and was painfully wounded at Malvern 
Hill, losing an eye. 

Lieutenants Bemzan Barnes and Ferrell were also wounded at 
Malvern Hill, while Garry Fulghum and L. B. Boyette were 
paroled at Appomattox. 

Company C — Carteret County — Captain S. D. Pool and his 
company were transferred to the artillery, and served on the 
coast. He became Colonel of the Tenth North Carolina Troops 
(First Artillery). Its place was supplied by a fine company from 
Wayne and Duplin counties — Captain, Gideon M. Roberts; Lieu- 
tenants, W. T. Faircloth, David Cogwell, W. W. Loftin, Nathan 
B. Whitfield, George W. Britt, Stephen Williams, Thomas W. 
Crow, Joel Jones, Thaddeus Jones. 
Captain Roberts resigned in 1862. 

Lieutenant W. T. Faircloth having been promoted to a cap- 
taincy, and made Quartermaster, N. B. Whitfield was given 
command of the company. He served until May 11, 1864, and 
was killed at Spottsylvania. 

Captain Faircloth (now Chief Justice of the Supreme Court) 
was a faithful officer in a most responsible position. W. W. 
Loftin died in 1864. 

Officers and men numbered 133. 

Company D — Wilson and Wayne Counties — Captain, Walter 
S. Stallings; Lieutenants, Isaac C. Applewhite, Matt. Manly, W. 
H. H. Cobb, J. C. Pierce, Wyatt E. Yelverton, W. H. Apple- 
I. C. Applewhite was wounded at Sharpsburg, and resigned. 

160 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Matt. Manly was made Captain while in a prison hospital 
from wounds received at Chancellorsville. 

In a great number of battles this company was commanded 
by Lieutenant Yelverton, with W. H. Applewhite the only 
other officer. Both of these officers were desperately wounded 
on several occasions. Applewhite, although shot through the 
lungs at Chancellorsville, was again with his comrades before 
the next battle. Better soldiers never stood before the guns of 
an enemy; true exponents of the character of the men they led. 

Lieutenant W. H. H. Cobb was made Assistant Surgeon, in 
which position he rendered most admirable service. It was after' 
his baptism of fire on the bloody field of Cold Harbor that he 
was promoted to the medical staff. 

In the medical corps of the regiment must be mentioned Hos- 
pital Steward, Joseph M. Caho, after the war the venerable 
Sheriff of the new county of Pamlico. Many a man owed his 
life to his skillful treatment and cheerful attention. His memory 
is a sweet one to us all. 

Captain Stallings became Major at the death of Colonel Tew, 
and Lieutenant-Colonel upon the promotion of Colonel Cox, and 
was the ranking officer of the regiment when killed. He received 
the wound from which he died at Castleman's Ford, near Berry- 
ville, July 18, 1864. He was repeatedly warned that he was 
exposing himself needlessly, but he could not be restrained. A 
shell burst near him, severing an artery, from which he bled to 
death. If any one could be said to have fir,st place in the hearts of 
the men of the Second Regiment, it was Walter Stallings. His 
was a rare spirit, gifted with every grace, and sensitive to every 
pulse of nature; a scholar of delightful wit and charming 
vivacity, and a man of gentle manners and finest courage. Eager 
in a charge and striking hard and quickly in retreat, beloved 
wherever he was known, a noble and generous heart was stilled 
when his life's blood ebbed away. 

CoMPAN-^ E— 1^5 men from Guilford and Ifi from Samp- 
son County — Captain, J. M. Morehead; Lieutenants, Henr^ C. 

Second Regiment. 161 

Gorrell, Joseph M. Morehead, James Turner Scales, James M. 
Hobson, J. E. Fraley, John M. Hobson. 

Captaio Morehead was promoted Lieutenant-Colonel of the 
Forty-fifth Regiment. 

Henry C. Gorrell was made Captain, and killed in Chicka- 
hominy Swamp, in one of the reconnaissances in force in Mc- 
Clellan's front in June, 1862. 

Lieutenant Scales commanded the company until he was pro- 
moted to Lieutenant-Colonel. He was wounded at Spott- 
sylvania, and again near Petersburg, and was the senior officer 
of the Second at Appomattox. 

James M, Hobson, J. T. Fraley and John M. Hobson were 
excellent soldiers. John Hobson received his bullet at Chancellors- 
ville with many another good man. 

James Hobson was captured at Spottsylvania after a race for 
a stand of colors. One of the color-bearers of the enemy, some- 
thing bolder than his comrades, planted his staff well in front 
and stood by it to meet our attack. Jim Hobson, with his eye on 
the Victoria Cross, or what was equivalent to it with us, "Well 
done, old fellow," from his companions, or hoping to get a men- 
tion in general orders, if the eye of the General should be happily 
on him, dashed forward to capture him. Hobson had no fire- 
arms, and could only secure the colors by outrunning the man. 
The race was a fast one — "nip and tuck" — with Hobson gaining, 
but the course was too short, and both disappeared in the line of 
the enemy. Hobson caught his man, but it was too late, and he 
kept on to Fort Delaware, where he saw enough of the Stars 
and Stripes. His son, Lieutenant Richmond P. Hobson, comes 
fairly by his gallant spirit. 

Company F — Graven County — Captain, Hugh L. Cole; Lieu- 
tenants, N. N. Chadwick, Roderick Wetherington, Henry J. B. 
Clark, Furnifold G. Heritage, W. C. Brewer, with Daniel Lane 
First Sergeant. 

Captain Cole took great interest in his company, and brought it 
up to a high state of efficiency by his attention to every exercise 
during the long months in camp of instruction. He was pre- 


162 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

vented by ill health from leading his company in the hard march- 
ing of the campaigns, and was obliged to surrender his command. 
He was promoted to the rank of Major. 

Lieutenant Chadwick became Captain upon the promotion of 
Major Cole. 

Henry J. B. Clark was killed in a railway accident, a very 
young, but promising officer. 

Heritage and Brewer, both fine soldiers, were promoted from 
the ranks. Heritage was killed at Petersburg. Brewer bears the 
scars of many desperate wounds. He commanded the skir- 
mishers of Cox's Brigade in the Valley campaign. 

Corporal Silas Fulcher, of this company, was the third color- 
bearer shot May 12th. He lost a leg. 

Officers and men, 146. 

Company G — Jones County — Captain, Harvey A. Sawyer; 
Lieutenants, S. E. Koonce, W. J. Dickerson, Robert H. Jones, 
Hiram A. Sawyer. 

Captain Sawyer, a very popular and efficient officer, was 
wounded at Malvern Hill, and died July 15, 1862. 

Orrin Williams was promoted from Company B, and made 
Captain. He was succeeded by W. J. Dickerson. After the 
capture of Lieutenant Dickerson at Kelly's Ford the company 
was commanded by Robert H. Jones, whose never-failing punct- 
uality and courage in battle gained the admiration of all his 
comrades, as his unselfish disposition had made him beloved by 

Andrew Sawyer was killed at Fisher's Hill. 

Company H — Wayne County — Captain, James A. Washing- 
ton; Lieutenants, Donald D. Munroe, John P. Cobb, James W. 
Gulick, Bryan W. Cobb, N. B. Whitfield. 

Captain Washington was promoted to the command of the 
Fiftieth and John P. Cobb was made Captain. After the dis- 
abling of Lieutenant James W. Gulick by a severe wound in the 
knee at Malvern Hill, and the retirement of Lieutenant Monroe, 
Bryan W. Cobb was made Captain. He was from the Military 
Academy at Hillsboro. 

Second Eegiment. 163 

Lieutenant Whitfield was killed. 

John P. Cobb, who commanded the company in many bat- 
tles, and was subsequently Colonel of the regiment, was wounded 
at Malvern Hill, Chancellorsville and Cold Harbor in 1864, and 
lost a leg while leading the regiment at Winchester. 

Alexander Murdock, of this company, was Ordnance Sergeant 
of the regiment, and Henry C. Prempert, Drum-major. Prem- 
pert directed the best drum corps in the division. The day of 
battle found him and his boys under the bursting shells in the 
rear of the line, too busy among the wounded to think of danger. 

Every officer in the regiment will remember the hospitable 
tent of Jim Washington and John Cobb, where th° '^°°* eating 
and drinking that Wayne county could furnish w srously 

offered to all who came, and the merriment was accompanied by 
the pleasant voice and exquisite violin of Sergeant Billie Bryan, 
of Company I. Bryan died in Richmond from wounds and the 
hardships of the campaign. 

Company I (Beauregard Rifles) — Graven and Pamlico 
Counties — Captain, D. W. Hurtt; Lieutenants, John P. Dilling- 
ham, Edward K. Bryan, Silvester Taylor, R. J. Gilbert, JST. C. 
Hughes, Israel B. Watson, John J. Hall. 

Captain D. W. Hurtt was most distinguished as commanding 
officer of the skirmishers of the brigade. He was wounded at 
Sharpsburg, and again, very severely, in the head at Gettysburg. 

John P. Dillingham was detailed as Quartermaster, and in 
1862 was made Adjutant. He was a most popular and faithful 

N. Collin Hughes was selected as Adjutant, and was a most 
valuable officer in the organization of the regiment. 

E. K. Bryan, after the Sharpsburg campaign, was made Ad- 
jutant of the Thirty-first Regiment. 

Lieutenant Watson was wounded and made a prisoner. 

John J. Hall was reported missing at Spottsylvania, and his 
fate still remains clouded with uncertainty. 

Sergeant Isaac Taylor Almore was killed in the great battle 
of May 12, 1864. 

164 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Company K (Elm City Cadets) — Craven and Pamlico 
Counties — Captain, George C. Lewis; Lieutenants, Alexander 
Miller, Richard D. Hancock, Joseph F. Hellen, William Calder, 
W. J. Street. 

Captain Lewis was wounded near Richmond in 1862, and 

Alexander Miller was made Captain in 1862, which position 
he held until the close of the war, having been captured at Kel- 
ley's Ford. 

Richard D. Hancock was severely wounded at Chancellors- 
ville. He commanded the company at Spottsylvania and the 
regiment at Fisher's Hill and Cedar Creek, taking part in all 
the painful marches of the Valley campaign of IS ding a 

faithful service of four years April 9, 18,65. 

W. J. Street, at one time First Sergeant, was wounded at Chan- 
cellorsville, Sharpsburg and Spottsylvania. The command of 
his company fell upon him on many occasions. 

Lieutenant Hellen was promoted, and transferred to the de- 
fenses of the Cape Fear. 

William Calder, after serving with distinction with the corps 
of skirmishers of the brigade as originally formed, was promoted 
to the First Battalion. 

W. A. Johnson was killed at Malvern Hill, Benjamin Cook 
at Chancellorsville and James Hancock at Cold Harbor in 1864. 

This company and Company F each had thirteen men killed 
at Chancellorsville. 

The companies composing the regiment went into camp of in- 
struction at Garysburg, a little beyond Weldon, opposite the 
camp of the Fourth Regiment, with which for three years we 
were associated on nearly every battlefield. 

At the time of the battle of Manassas the Second Regiment, 
being ordered to Virginia, went to Richmond, thence northward 
near the Potomac, where for six months it was engaged in severe 
drilling and other camp exercises and in picket duty on the 
bleak south bank of the Potomac. 

Second Eegiment. 165 

When Burnside took New Bern the Second from Virginia 
Tvent to Goldsboro, and from there, in the' spring of 1862, went 
to Camp Wyatt, near Fort Fisher, where during the day the 
men were drilled and threw up walls of sand and at night 
patrolled the beach and fought fleas. Such duty not being to 
their liking, the officers of the regiment asked to be sent to the 
front in Virginia. This was not a " home guard " regiment. It 
was "in for the war," and the reports of the bloody but glorious 
battles of Williamsburg, Seven Pines and others made it wish 
to share the honors with the other North Carolina regiments. 

In June the Second was sent to Virginia, and saw some ser- 
vice in the repeated feints made daily upon McClellan's front 
before the great campaign called the Seven Days' Battles. 
The conduct of the regiment in these battles was that when 
ordered forward it never halted until directed by the command- 
ing officer so to do. 

At Mechanicsville, June 26th, we were the first troops to cross 
the bridge (just repaired by the pioneers) leading up to the town. 
Mr. Jefferson Davis rode immediately in front. An officer 
advised that it would be safer for him to go by the ford, a sug- 
gestion that was courteously declined. His wish was to share 
every danger. Is it a wonder that we loved him? The march 
up the hill was made under a terrific shelling — the enemy had 
had our range, and the shells burst frequently among us. 

At Cold Harbor the regiment, after undergoing the difficult 
and trying ordeal of receiving several fatal volleys from our own 
troops, sprang to the charge, and slackened pace only when both 
flanks were uncovered and the enemy was flying. 

At Malvern Hill it received orders directly from General D. 
H. Hill, when the message came from General Jackson: "Press 
forward on the right, the enemy is retreating." Going out of 
the woods, wheeling to the left across the open field, thence 
through the pines and up into the deadly cornfield in the face of 
such volleys of grape and shrapnel as we had never met before, 
it fought until night came, and the firing dwindled from rapid 
volleying to infrequent single shots. The fight was over, the 

166 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

wounded began crawling away to find friends and the litter- 
bearer came to give assistance. 

Preparation was soon made for the Maryland campaign, in 
which the desperate situation on South Mountain was changed 
to one of security by the determined courage of D. H. Hill's 
Division aud the great battle of Sharpsburg was to add renown 
to our arms throughout the world. The Second was hotly en- 
gaged on South Mountain and fought in so many directions that 
DO one knew which was front. General Hill informed some of 
the men who were getting excited, seeing the blue coats in the 
rear, that the front was where the enemy appeared, and the 
maskets would carry as well in one direction as another. 

Hill's presence was always sufficient to give full assurance that 
we were in the right place, and we had only to fight to win. 
There was never a better soldier, or a man better qualified to 
judge of the merits of one. The clash of battle was not a con- 
fusing din to him, but an exciting scene that awakened his spirit 
and his genius. The survivors of the Second lay upon his hon- 
ored grave a chaplet of immortelles in token of esteem and 

The battle of Sharpsburg was fought September 17, 1862, on 
the hills in front of the town of that name, and so called. The 
generals of the United States forces called the battle Antietam, 
the name of a creek two miles away, where McClellan retired to 
claim a victory. 

The part the Second Regiment took in this battle is told best 
in few words on medallions of metal near the crest of the hill at 
the end of "Bloody Lane." On the anniversary of the battle,. 
September 17, 1897, when the magnificent monument was 
dedicated to the Philadelphia brigade, a party of veterans of the 
United States army were looking over the field, when one saidt 
"I was standing near this spot when Meagher's Brigade charged 
over that hill. There was never anything finer. The troops 
that could stand against that brigade were good ones. Let us go 
and see." They went over to the "Bloody Lane," and along it 
until they came to the inscription : " Here Meagher's New York 

Secoxd RegimeKt. 167 

Brigade charged, and, afier a bloody and desperate encounter at 
thirty paces, were obliged to retire," etc. Within a few feet 
stood the opposing inscription: " Here Anderson's North Caro- 
lina "Brigade stood and checked the advance of the enemy, driv- 
ing him back with great slaughter." 

At thirty paces ! They were gallant gentlemen that could stand 
and fight in the open field at thirty paces, and hearts of oak that 
could drive back such a foe — "Anderson's Brigade of North 
Carolina" (the Second, the Fourth, the Fourteenth, the Thir- 

The survivors of the Second North Carolina Troops salute the' 
honorable commissioners who marked the field. 

The brigade of General Thomas Francis Meagher was the 
most distinguished organization in the Army of the Potomac. 
Its charge at Marye's Heights had never been surpassed for 
desperate courage. With all their splendid organization, equip- 
ment and 'prestige, "the faithful few," as General D. H. Hill 
addressed Anderson's Brigade, were able to meet fhem in the 
open field and force them to retire. 

During the battle in this bloody lane Colonel Charles Cour- 
tenay Tew was killed, his body falling into the hands of the 
enemy. Colonel Tew was not immediately with his regiment 
when he was shot, having been called to direct the movements 
of the brigade upon the wounding of General Anderson, and 
was on the left, not in view of his own men. He was shot 
through the head and placed in the sunken road near the gate- 
way of the lane that leads to the farm-house, with his back to 
the bank nearer the enemy. Here he was found, apparently un- 
conscious, the blood streaming from a wound in the head, with 
his sword held by both hands across his knees. A Federal sol- 
dier attempted to take the sword from him, but he drew it 
toward his body with the last of his remaining strength, and 
then his grasp relaxed and he fell forward, dead. 

This account of Colonel Tew was given the writer by a soldier 
of the Eighth Ohio upon the field of Sharpsburg in the summer 
of 1897. The sword was given by the soldier to the colonel of 

168 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

his regiment, who unfortunately is no longer living, and the 
sword, having passed into other hands, cannot be recovered. 

Colonel Tew had a military school at Hillsboro when he offered 
his sword to the Governor of North Carolina. He had rnade 
a tour of Europe, partly on foot, and had visited many of the 
great army posts, studying military service and the art of war, 
and was pre-eminent in every accomplishment of a gentleman 
and a soldier. The nobility of his disposition and the purity of 
his life gained for him the truest respect of every man. When 
knighthood was in flower he might have worn the golden rose 
of virtue. No word unworthy a maiden knight of old was ever 
spoken by him in the hearing of his officers or men. His pres- 
ence was a sanctuary. He has followed those who, pure in heart, 
sought the Holy Grail, and who now reflect its ineffable light. 

After the battle of Sharpsburg, General Lee withdrew into 
Virginia, and the Second Regiment went into camp near Wiia- 
chester. Later, Hill's Division moved near Front Royal, on the 
Shenandoah;' where General Hill, much annoyed by the enemy 
being reported at every point of the compass, called for volun- 
teers for "extra and dangerous service," the object being to find 
the enemy. Many volunteered, among them Lieutenant Wilson 
T. Jenkins, of the Fourteenth. Those selected were, for the most 
part, from the Second. 

The regiment moved back into the Valley, but soon took up 
its long march to the south bank of the lower Rappahannock to 
meet Burnside, who expected to take the shortest road to Rich- 
mond by way of Fredericksburg. It was on this march, late 
one evening, that General Hill issued his memorable order 
that threw consternation among the company officers. It was 
to the effect that should any man be seen on the march next 
day without shoes the officer commanding the company should 
be "placed in arrest and recommended to be dropped." It 
was late at night before, we understood that the skins of 
the newly-killed beeves were to be made into moccasins. All 
night was consumed in the work, as there were nearly one 
hundred men of the regiment without shoes. Next day the 


1. W. H. H. Cobb, Assistant Surgeon. 

2. Eichard D. Hancock, Ist Lieut., Co. K. 

3. W. J. Street, 8ii Lieut., Co. K. 

4. E. K. Bryan, ad Lieut., Co. I. 

6. E. J. Brooks, Ordnance Sergeant, Co. L 

6. A. J. Casey, Private, Co. H. 

7. N. Colin Hughes, 1st Lieut, and Adjt. 

8. S. R. Street, Corporal, Co. K. 

Second Regiment. 169 

regiment appeared like a lot of cripples, the raw hide having 
curled and shrunk in the most uncomfortable way. 

At the battle of Fredericksburg, December 13, 1862, the Second 
Regiment was on the right, and not engaged, except in receiving 
the enemy's fire of shell. The casualties in the regiment were 
regarded as few, but were more than the losses of any regiment 
in the great battles of the present decade. Burnside, not liking 
the greeting he received on the south side of the river, re-crossed, 
and allowed us to prepare our winter quarters in security. 

The spring of 1863 found the regiment hard at work getting 
into shape again. All the duties of camp were thoroughly ob- 
served. The men of the Second were distinguished for their 
bearing, and when detailed for any detached service their famil- 
iarity with every duty was noticeable. 

A most valuable corps of sharp-shooters was created for the 
brigade by taking forty men from each regiment. This corps, 
under Major D. W. Hurtt, Friday before the battle of Chan- 
cellorsville, received the compliments of General (Stonewall) 
Jackson, who was looking on when it drove the enemy's line 
across a field and captured some prisoners. Ramseur mentions 
Major Hurtt and his skirmishers in his official report. 

The Second was doing picket duty on the Rappahannock 
when the enemy, under Hooker, began his movement by the 
right flank. 

Friday morning the regiment, under Colonel W. R. Cox, was 
moved up towards Chancellorsville, driving in the enemy's out- 
posts. That night it lay so near the opposing line all orders s^ere 
given in the lowest tones. The parole or sign and countersign 
were employed — the first time in our experience. " Liberty" was 
the parole "And Independence" the countersign. Its use was 
dangerous, except among the most intelligent and .steady men. 
To have lefii out the "and" that night would have cost a man his 

Saturday the memorable march of Jackson's Corps was made, 
encircling the enemy's right flank and bringing us upon the 
backs of Siegel's men about sunset. In the early morning the 

170 North Cakolina Tkoops, 1861-'65. 

Second halted in the road immediately opposite, where a few 
feet from us sat General Lee and General Jackson, and we wit- 
nessed the ceremonious salutations among officers of high rank 
in the field. What became of Siegel's Corps is a matter of his- 
tory. The honors were with our generals that day. The next 
day the men with the guns were entitled to the glory. 

General Grimes, then commanding the Fourth Eegiment, has 
given an account of why we charged, and who should have 
charged, mentioning that "three companies of the Second Regi- 
ment charged" at the same time and with his regiment. Seven 
companies of the Second charged, but they went in echelon, the 
left leading and going far beyond the enemy's breastworks, 
while the right did not reach it. Our going forward in this 
order was by General Ramseur's command. Ramseur had just 
parted from Grimes, and given orders to go forward. As he 
approached our left he said: "Forward, Second!" The three 
captains stood half-faced to the right, with eyes upon Colonel 
Cox, who was plainly in view, waiting for his command, as in 
duty bound. The men in the line were stooping like athletes 
when General Ramseur said: "Forward at once!" The three 
companies got the word first and dashed forward at top speed, 
encouraged to believe that the fastest charge is the safest. 
Colonel Cox, as soon as he understood the movement, led all 
forward except three companies on the right, which were neces- 
sary to protect our flank. We drove the enemy from his works 
and down a hill, uncovering his batteries, which then had full 
play on us at two hundred yards. We silenced the guns 
immediately in front, but the enfilading fire was most disastrous. 
The regiment, although successful in driving the enemy, lost 
three-fourths of those present within about fifteen minutes — 
three hundred out of four hundred. 

A short time before the battle of Chancellorsville the color- 
guard of the regiment was reformed, consisting of a sergeant and 
a corporal from each company. Kindred Lewis was the ser- 
geant selected. Every member of the regiment looked with 
pride upon this splendid young soldier and his companions who 

Second Regiment. 171 

stood beside him. Tall, erect, in action like the herald Mer- 
cury, he bore high the blue saltier on its field of crimson. 
When the command "Charge!" was given, he rushed forward 
to mount the wall of the enemy's defense. In that moment every 
member of the color-guard was shot, and Lewis, who had leaped 
upon the wall, fell forward on the outer side, killed instantly. 
The regiment returned sadly to camp. 

The next campaign was into the enemy's country. At Gettys- 
burg, on the first day of the battle (July 1, 1 863), the Second Regi- 
ment moved into the town, and was in Rodes' Division when he 
occupied Oak Hill, breaking the enemy's line and throwing him 
into confusion. The skirmishers of the brigade engaged a Penn- 
sylvania regiment on the streets of the town and took its flag 
from the color-bearer. Major Hurtt was severely wounded and 
Ed. McLacklan killed. The second day the brigade was in 
advance to the stonewall on Cemetery Hill. Ramseur asked 
to be allowed to push forward and secure the position, but there 
were reasons why it could not be done. 

On the retreat the corps halted at Hagerstown, where General 
Cullen A. Battle, of Alabama, who had just won the wreath of 
a general officer by the very highest service in the field, was 
requested to announce to the troops that Pembertou had sur- 
rendered Vicksburg to Grant. The effect of the news of the 
disaster was to make the troops wish to renew the battle at once. 
Upon the return to Virginia the Second was engaged at Mine 
Run and at Kelly's Ford, where we were unfortunate enough 
to lose many of our best men by wounds and by capture. Com- 
panies B, F and K were on picket duty, and not receiving timely 
support, were the heaviest losers. 

Winter quarters were chosen at Orange Court House. 

Early in the spring of 1864 Grant began his "On to Richmond" 
campaign by way of Spottsylvania, and met with such resistance 
as the world never saw in the open field. The weakening of a part 
of the line under General Edward Johnson being known, Han- 
cock seized the opportunity and, under cover of a fog, at dawn 
drove Johnson back, capturing most of his command. Then 

172 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

came the crowaing glory of the career of Ramseur's Brigade — 
the same faithful few — the Second, the Fourth, the Fourteenth 
and the Thirtieth. Ordered into the breach, they drove the enemy 
out of the angle just taken and back through every line to his 
formidable breastworks, reclaiming all our lost ground. 

At Chancellorsville the brigade received through General Lee 
a message of praise from the dying lips of General Jackson. On 
the field at Spottsylvania, General Lee directed Ramseur to 
thank his men, and to say that they had saved that part of his 

Ramseur was made Major-General, and Cox, under whose 
command we had fought since South Mountain, was given a 
brigade. Happily for us, it was the old brigade, and we were 
destined always to fight under his direction. 

On May 22d we had a sharp fight at Hanover Junction, and 
at Cold Harbor, June 2d, we were hotly engaged and lost severely. 

Soon after our struggle with Grant we were ordered to Lynch- 
burg to meet Hunter, who had come up the Valley of Virginia. 
Other troops had preceded us, but we followed down the Valley 
and sent our skirmishers into Harper's Ferry on the 4th of July 
to feast on the dinner prepared by the United States officers for 
" the day we celebrate." 

General Early, in whose corps we then were, turned to the 
eastward, toward Washington. At the Monocacy River our 
march was impeded for a short time by General Lew Wallace, 
of "Ben Hur" fame. He gave us several hundred prisoners before 
flying behind the defenses of the city. Our regiment came in 
view of Washington, but it was not to be supposed we could 
take a city of such size and so defended. After our return to 
Virginia we had a sharp and bloody engagement at Castleman's 
Ford on the Shenandoah, near Perryville, under General Cox. 
Here the noble-hearted Stallings fell. The enemy had the ad- 
vantage of position after we had driven him back, and he could 
not be dislodged. 

Winchester, Fisher's Hill, Cedar Creek — these were bloody 
battles, and never did the steadfast courage of our men show 

Second Eegiment. 173 

more conspicuously than on these fields. Moving about under 
the dreadful hail of shell and shot, charged by the thundering 
cavalry of Sheridan, their lines overlapped, no reserves to fall 
back upon, their beloved leaders, Rodes, E,araseur, Stallings, 
dead, and Cobb perhaps fatally wounded, they never lost their 
grim determination, but fought in every direction, and kept to- 
gether, whether driving the enemy or retreating before over- 
whelming numbers. 

At Winchester, under Rodes, we went to the support of 
Ramseur, and drove the enemy across the hills until so far ad- 
vanced we were recalled. In the retreat from Winchester the 
brigade, under Cox, held the enemy in check and saved the 
artillery corps. 

At Fisher's Hill the division was commanded by General C. 
A. Battle. The men of the Second remember him and his mag- 
nificent brigade with kindest feeling and admiration, whether 
fighting one another with snow balls or by their sides fighting 
the enemy of our country. Lieutenant Richard D. Hancock 
commanded the regiment. The brigade, under Cox (it was 
known as Cox's Brigade from the battle of Spottsylvania, 12th 
May, 1864), after fighting all day against fearful odds, withdrew 
intact at the close of the day. 

The Second Regiment suffered severely in this fight. 

Ramseur took command of the division after Fisher's Hill. 
No general officer was ever nearer to the hearts of his men than 
Ramseur. He came to the brigade with his arm hanging use- 
less at his side from a wound received in 1862, and soon won 
the aff^ectionate regard of every man in his command. 

"He was as full of valor as of kindness; 
"Princely in both." 

Within one month of the battle of Winchester, after an all- 
night march, we came, at dawn, upon Crook's Corps. With a few 
regiments fresh enough to meet with the cavalry and present an 
unbroken front to the enemy, we could have swept the Valley. 
Cox's Brigade captured more prisoners than his brigade num- 

174 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

bered, and sent thousands flying down the Yalley. But Rani- 
seur's Division could do no more. 

In the three battles within a month we were much reduced in 
numbers, and in such a charge as Cedar Creek, where the enemy 
was flying, and in the subsequent encounters of the day, when the 
field was lost, our men were much scattered. New Market was 
the place appointed for rendezvous, where all the living came 
together again. 

The division from this time was commanded by General 
Bryan Grimes, a worthy successor to such commanders as Hill, 
Rodes and Ramseur, our former division generals. It was under 
Grimes and Cox and James T. Scales that the regiment gave 
the final proof of their quality. The battle in the snow in the 
Valley, November 22d, was full of hardships. Pursuing cavalry 
on foot, with shoes that hardly held to their feet, was painful in 
the extreme. 

In December the Second Regiment came near Richmond and 
took part in the hard campaign before Petersburg. Toward the 
end of March the division made a briHiant charge, driving the 
enemy from his works and capturing twelve pieces of artillery 
and a number of prisoners. The troops of the division on the 
1st of April were at their former trade, retaking the works from 
which others had been driven, and restoring the line, and on the 
6th covering the retreat of the army and keeping the enemy in 
check by desperate fighting throughout the day. 

Grimes seemed to possess a charmed life, always to be seen in 
the most exposed positions. The bullets were apparently unable to 
reach him. Cox, equally reckless of personal danger, was not so 
fortunate. He received five wounds at Chancellorsville alone, be- 
sides many others at different tiaies. We always looked upon 
General Cox as of our regiment (we were never separated), and 
his history is the story of the Second Regiment. He appeared 
to the clear eyes and honest heart of Ramseur as "the manly 
and chivalrous Cox, of the Second North Carolina, the accom- 
plished gentleman, splendid soldier and warm friend, who, 
though wounded five times, remained with his regiment until 

Second Regiment. 175 

exhausted." Such was his character in the eyes of the men of 
the Second. 

On April 7th a charge was ffiade for the relief of Mahone, 
who was hard pressed. The enemy was driven back and a 
number of prisoners captured. General Lee again expressed his 
appreciation of the conduct of the North Carolinians. The Gen- 
eral seemed to have the gift of prophecy^ and gave the North 
Carolinians on the field the meed of praise which was to be long 
withheld in the history of their country. 

The 8th was spent in marching towards Appomattox, which 
was passed during the night. Sunday, the 9tfa of April, found 
the regiment in front of the town, where it engaged the enemy, 
and were driving him when withdrawn and ordered to join the 
other divisions of Gordon's Corps. 

Then the last scene of the greatest drama of modern times — 
the surrender, the cry of mortification, the curse of defiance, the 
tears of sorrow for our friends slain in battle, and above all, the 
noble words of our great-hearted leader: "Human fortitude 
should be above human calamity!" 

The highest claim to distinction that any man in this country 
can make is that he enlisted for the defense of his State at the 
first call to arms, and fought with the armies in the field to the 
last day at Appomattox. 

All whose names are not inscribed on that last immortal roll 
are envious of the honor. The officers and soldiers' of the Second 
paroled at Appomattox were: 

Officers — William. R. Cox, James Turner Scales, Robert 
H. Jones, Richard D. Hancock, Garry Fulghum, Larry B. 
Boyette, William J. Street, William T. Faircloth, William B. 
Bell, Samuel P. Collier. 

Company A — John E. Banner, James G. Burt. 

Company B— Elliot Todd, W. C. Batts, Thomas Flowers, 
Hodge Bass, Raiford Fulghum, Charles Maddry, Irvin Boykin, 
Bunyon Stett, John C. Wells, Wiley Statt, John Renike,- 
Simeon Moore. 

176 North Carolina Troops, 1861-66. 

Company C — Furney Herald. 

Company D — Benjamin A. Howard, J. T. Edmundson, John 
W. Fort, Franklin Webb, Harris Lamb, Leary B. Lamb, Wil- 
liam Mumford, James T. Mitchell, William J. L. Mears. 

Company E — L. R. Colley, L. W. Hackett, John Sills, John 
T. Warren. 

Company F— Daniel Lane, David Johnson, James Brinkley, 
Lewis C. Taylor, John A. Poteat, Erasmus F. Page, Robert J. 

Company G — John Saunders, H. H. Young, Stephen Alli- 

Company I — George W. Fulghum, John Austin, David 
Powers, A. C. Powell. 

Company H — Jacob Williams, Robert Williams, Warren 
Corbett, William B. Pike. 

Every man who came safely through to that day should be 
entitled to wear a badge indicating the distinction; then on 
every ninth of April "should their names, familiar in our mouths 
as household words, be freshly remembered." 

Matt. Manly. 

New Bern, N. C, 

April 9, 1900. 


1. Gaston Meares, Colonel. 5. John F. S. VanBokkclen, Capt.,Co. D. 

2. Wm. Lord BeRosset, Colonel. C. John Cowan, Captain, Co. D. 

3. E. H. Cowan, Lieut.-Colonel. 7. James I. Metts, Captain, Co. G. 

4. William M. Parsley, Lieut.-Colonel. 8. Rev. Geo. Patterson, D.D., Chaplain. 

9. Thomas F. Wood, Assistant Snrgeon. 


JOHN COWAN, Captain Company D. 
JAMES I. METTS, Captain Company G. 

The Third North Carolina Infantry, like all of the other regi- 
ments sent by North Carolina to the field in the late civil war, 
wrote for itself and the people from whom it came, upon 
the field, retrieving lost but perilous positions in battle, in the 
bivouac, upon the march, as well as in its number of slain and 
wounded, a history, which hitherto locked up in the memory of its 
members, remains as yet, a score and a half of years since the 
eventful Appomattox, to be recited. 

A proud boast it is of the sons of the " Old North State" that 
they are not trumpeters of their own achievements, whether in 
the forum, in legislative hall, or upon the field of battle; and 
who can gainsay, since the colonization of the area which is 
now bounded by the State lines of North Carolina, that they 
have stood the peers of any with whom they came in contact? 
So especially did the spirit of Christian charity, "in honor pre- 
ferring one another," inspire her soldiers from 1861 to 1865. 
Fired by an emulative zeal to attain unto the highest perfection 
of duty, they recognized the common cause of all Confederate 
soldiers. They were so imbued with that spirit of magnanimity, 
that rather than pluck one laurel from the crown which adorned 
the brow of their fellow-soldiers, they vied with each other in 
adding to that emblem of triumph. 

So, the history of one regiment of North Carolina Troops is 
the history of another, save in the details which mark their 
respective achievements in the different spheres in which fortune 
called them to move. If encomiums of commanders, congrat- 


178 NoETH Caeolina Teoops, 1861-'65. ■ 

ulatory orders for duty under the most disheartening and adverse 
circumstances, and the indisputable facts of deeds accomplished 
count for naught, then only are the North Carolina soldiers 
without a record. Histories may have been published, false in 
conception and untrue in statement, "the conceits of a warmed 
or overweening brain," but the steadfast faith, the admiring gaze 
has been riveted upon the soldiery of North Carolina from 
Maryland to Texas. 

Yea, more; some who have written from another than our 
stand-point, who saw the conflict, its course and operations 
through different lenses than those of the Southern side have, 
in their impartial judgment, accorded the highest word of praise 
to North Carolina Troops. The hillocks of Virginia, the 
swamps of Georgia, the sands of the beach are mute cenotaphs 
of her dead. Unparalleled in their devotion to the Union, they 
were devout; loyal to the cause of the Confederacy, they were 

Figures are the most potent arguments in establishing the 
truth or falsity of any proposition or cause. 

This regiment, one of ten authorized by the Constitutional 
Convention, enlisted for the war, and was composed of field offi- 
cers, Gaston Meares, Colonel; Robert H. Cowan, Lieutenant- 
Colonel; William L. DeRosset, Major, all of Wilmington, N. C, 
and comprised the following companies : 

Company A was raised in Greene county, and commanded by 
Captain Robert H., Drysdale. 

Company B was raised in Duplin, and commanded by Cap- 
tain Stephen D. Thruston, M. D. 

Company C was raised in Cumberland, and commanded by 
Captain Peter Mallett. , 

Company D was raised in Wilmington, and commanded by 
Captain Edward Savage. 

Company E was raised in Onslow, and commanded by Cap- 
tain M. L. F. Redd. 

Company F was raised in Wilmington, and commanded by 
Captain William M. Parsley. 

Third Regiment, 179. 

Company G was raised in Onslow, and commanded by Cap- 
tain E. H. Rhodes. 

Company H was raised in Bladen, and commanded by 
Captain Theo. M. Sikes. 

Company I was raised in Beaufort, and commanded by 
Captain John R. Carmer. 

Company K was raised in New Hanover (now Pender), and 
commanded by Captain David Williams. 

The several companies were ordered to assemble at Garys- 
burg; and in the latter part of May they began to report to the 
officer in charge of the camp. A portion of the Third was or- 
dered to Richmond early in July, where it was joined some 
weeks later by the remaining companies. A few days after the 
first battle of Manassas the regiment was ordered to report to 
Major-General T. H. Holmes at Acquia Creek, and went into 
camp near Brooks' Station, on the Richmond, Fredericksburg 
& Potomac Railroad, later moving camp to a point near the 
Potomac River. As winter approached, having meantime built 
substantial quarters, they took up their abode therein immedi- 
ately in rear of the lower battery of those constructed for the de- 
fense of Acquia Creek. Upon the evacuation of the line of the 
Potomac, the Third North Carolina, with the First, was ordered 
to Goldsboro to meet an expected advance of Burnside from New 
Bern, remaining thereabouts until early in June, 1862. In May, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Cowan having been promoted to the colon- 
elcy of the Eighteenth North Carolina Infantry, Major DeRos- 
set was made Lieutenant-Colonel and Captain Savage, Major. 

It was with sincere regret that the regiment parted with Col- 
onel Cowan; the officers and men of the command loved him, 
and he Was recognized as the one as much as any other by whom 
the regiment had been brought to its efficiency in discipline and 
especially in drill. The esteem in which he was held was mani- 
fested by the regiment by the presentation upon his departure ot 
a magnificent horse. 

The First and Third North Carolina Troops were under the 

180 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

same brigade commanders from first to last; but, unfortunately, 
were brigaded with troops from other States until the capture 
at Spottsylvania Court House, 1864, of so many of the regi- 
ment, and never received proper meed for their achievements. 
First, Colonel John G. Walker was assigned to command the 
brigade, then consisting of the First and Third North Carolina 
and the Thirtieth Virginia and First Arkansas. The regi- 
ment having been ordered to Richmond, arrived on the battle- 
field of Seven Pines just after the battle had been fought. Here 
it remained for several weeks, chiefly on picket duty, with an 
occasional skirmish with the enemy, losing several of its men. 
While here a new brigade was formed, composed of the First 
and Third North Carolina, the Fourth and Forty-fourth Geor- 
gia, and Brigadier-General R. S. Ripley was assigned to its 
command, Major-General D. H. Hill being in command of the 

The march from Richmond was most trying to the raw troops 
of the brigade, who had not then received their baptism of fire. 
Passing thousands of dead and wounded from the time they left 
the cars until they arrived on the battlefield, the groans and 
cries of the wounded were not calculated to inspire the boys with 
a martial spirit. 

During the period from that date to the opening of the battles 
around Richmond the command was in camp about six miles 
from Richmond, drilling and preparing for the summer cam- 

Late in the evening of June 25, 1862, Colonel Meares re- 
ceived orders to march, and proceeding early next morning in a 
northerly direction, we halted on the high hills on the south of 
the Chickahominy where it is crossed by the Mechanicsville pike. 

On the 26th of June, after a circuitous and fatiguing night 
march, the regiment arrived in the vicinity of Mechanicsville. 
Here a detail of one company from each regiment was made, and 
Lieutenant-Colonel DeRosset, of the Third, was placed in com- 
mand. The object of this select battalion was to clear the way 
and examine the bridge across the Chickahominy. (A mine was 

Thibd . Regiment. 181 

thought to have been placed under it by the enemy). In order 
to understand its duties more fully, its officers were sent to the 
top of the hill near by, from which could be seen the route in-^ 
tended, etc. On this hill, and in range of the enemy's guns, a 
group of distinguished Confederates were, assembled, composed 
of President Davis, Mr. Randolph (Secretary of War), Generals 
Lee, Longstreet and D. H. Hill, waiting to hear General Jack- 
son's guns on the north side of Mechanics ville before ordering 
an advance. 

General Jackson being delayed, General Lee ordered an ad- 
vance of this portion of the line after hearing the guns of Gen- 
eral'A. P. Hill at Meadow Bridge. After the battalion alluded 
to had examined and crossed the bridge, and cleared the field of 
skirmishers, Ripley's Brigade having been selected as the as- 
saulting column, was ordered across the bridge and to form a 
line of battle. It advanced to the attack in front of the splen- 
did artillery of the enemy strongly posted across the pond at 
Ellyson's Mills. The regiment pressed forward in the face of 
this heavy fire in open field for more than a mile, advancing 
steadily to what seemed inevitable destruction, until it reached the 
top of the hill, when a halt was ordered, bayonets fixed, and a 
charge, led by Colonel Meares, was made down the hill, which 
was checked by the canal; and after lying down a short while, the 
regiment was ordered to the right and rear, and up the hill, 
taking shelter in a skirt of woods, where we remained until just 
before daybreak. We were so near the enemy that the least 
noise, even the snapping of a twig, provoked their fire. From 
thence, before day, we marched to Mechanicsville and were 
placed in line of battle under a heavy artillery fire in the rear of 
the Eighteenth North Carolina Infantry, until the enemy were 
driven from their works on the opposite side of the creek. The 
Third North Carolina lost perhaps less than either of the other 
regiments. Major Savage being the only one of the field ofiScers 

Joining, after the battle, the forces of General Jackson, the 
command was marched by a circuitous route to Cold Harbor, or 

182 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Gaines' Mill, where the battle took place on the afternoon of 
June 27th. Here the regiment, under the command of Colonel 
Meares, with the exception of a small portion which had some- 
how become detached, was exposed to a musketry and a very 
severe artillery fire, and endured the ordeal known among all 
soldiers to be the most trying to which they are subjected, that 
of being under fire without being engaged in the fight. March- 
ing thence, after two or three days' delay, the brigade found 
itself in front of one of the bridges over the Chickahominy, which 
had been destroyed by the enemy on the south side, who had 
crossed the day before on the famous " grape-vine " bridge, some 
distance above. 

Here, being exposed to the enemy's fire of artillery without 
the means of replying, Ripley was withdrawn into a heavy 
woods on the northwest side of the road, lying there all day 
under the artillery fire, at times very annoying, but with little 
loss. This was the day of the battle of Frazer's Farm, a few 
miles lower down the stream. 

Next day, the enemy having withdrawn and the bridge hav- 
ing been repaired, Ripley crossed and marched on Malvern Hill, 
arriving there at noon, and was posted immediately in the rear 
of what was known as the Parsonage, on the near side of the 
road leading by Malvern Hill, and on the left of the army. Be- 
ing ordered to advance, the whole line moved forward up the 
hill, across the parsonage yard, into the road beyond. Being 
under a most terrific fire of musketry and canister, and in close 
proximity to the enemy stationed in an open field in front, the 
left of the regiment penetrated the woods beyond, into the open 
field, where it engaged the enemy, making several charges 
upon him, led by Captain David Williams, of Company K, and 
causing the battery in front to move back. To Captain Williams 
and his men great praise should be accorded for their gallantry. 
The right of the regiment, then in the road, after firing several 
rounds, was ordered by Colonel Meares to lie down. At this 
point Captain Parsley, of Company F, was wounded iu the neck, 
fell, and Colonel Meares, being very near, went to him. The 

Third Regiment. 183 

regiment was thrown into some confusion prior to reaching this 
position, owing to the fact that the Parsonage and yard referred 
to were an obstruction. 

About an hour before dusk word came from the left that Cap- 
tain Brown, commanding the First North Carolina, was hard 
pressed, and wanted assistance, when the gallant Colonel Meares 
gave the command to move by the left flank. He, being on foot 
in the road in front of the line, upon reaching a point near the 
left of the Third, stopped, and mounting the bank on the side of 
the road, was using his field-glass surveying the Federal lines, 
when he was instantly killed by a slug from a shrapnel fired 
from a battery directly in front, said to be the Third Rhode 
Island Battery, not over . seventy-five yards distant. Colonel 
Meares was a digflified and elegant gentleman and a true type of 
a soldier. Kind, humane, intrepid, he always commanded the 
admiration of his regiment, for in him they recognised a leader 
who would lead. 

Night came at last to end this bloody and disastrous struggle, 
though the firing was kept up until about 11 o'clock. Darkness 
revealed the explosive balls which the Yankees fired at us, as 
they struck the fences in front and rear and the undergrowth. The 
removal of the wounded back to Bethesda Church, our hospital, 
was pushed with vigor. So great was the loss of all commands 
in the field and road that one could walk hundreds of yards on 
the dead and wounded without touching the ground. 

The next day the dead of these two regiments, the First and 
Third, were found nearer to those of the enemy than were those 
of any other troops on this part of the line, proving that they 
approached nearer the enemy's line of battle than any of the 
regiments that fought on this part of the field. The regiment 
suffered heavily in this engagement. The Third held its posi- 
tion during the night and bivouacked near that point for several 
days, when the brigade was ordered back to the old camping- 
grounds nearer Richmond. Ripley lay in camp for several 
weeks, while details were made to work on the intrenchments in 

184 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

our front and for several miles down towards the Chickahominy, 
and other details gathered arms from several battlefields. 

In the latter part of July, Colonel DeRosset returned from 
Ealeigh, and brought with him four hundred conscripts, who 
were at once divided into squads, and, under command of non- 
commissioned officers, were drilled several hours daily. This 
not only helped to discipline the raw levies, but hardened them 
somewhat, thus enabling them the better to stand the strains in- 
cident to the march into Maryland, which soon followed. 

About the 9th of August the regiment moved in the direction 
the army had taken, passing the battlefield of Cedar Mountain, 
and was in reserve at second Manassas and Chantilly. After- 
wards it crossed the Potomac at Point of Rocks and camped near 
Frederick,'^Md., where it remained for several days, then crossed 
the South Mountain at Crampton's Gap and remained at Boons- 
boro until the 14th, when it participated in the battle of the 
gap, Ripley's Brigade marched by a road leading towards the 
Boonsboro and Sharpsburg pike. On reaching a point on the 
crest of the hill, just after crossing the Antietam on the stone 
bridge, the command was placed in line of battle under the hill, 
the right of the Third North Carolina, in the absence of the 
Fourth Georgia, on the right of the bridge, and resting on the 
Boonsboro pike. This was on the evening of the 15th, and the 
brigade remained in that position until the evening of the 16th, 
under a heavy artillery fire from the enemy's guns on the side of 
the creek, but without loss, being well protected by the crest of 
the hill under which they lay. 

We now give in full the graphic account of the battle of 
Sharpsburg, written by Colonel S. D. Thruston. 


On the evening of the 16th September, 1862, being in line 
of battle in front of the town of Sharpsburg, a little be- 
fore sunset we were moved, left in front, from this position, 
along the Sharpsburg- Hagerstown pike, some distance to the 
left, until reaching the mouth of a lane (apparently a private 

Third Eegiment. 185 

road leading to a farm) leading in a generally perpendicular 
direction from the pike to the Antietam; following this lane a 
short distance, we again filed to the left, across the field and 
halted under the brow of a hill, on which and in front was a 
white farm-house (Mumma's) about two hundred yards distant. 
A little to the right and rear of this honse was an apple orchard 
surrounded by a rail fence. In this position we slept, to be 
aroused at early dawn of the 17th by the guns of the enemy. 
Before advancing to the attack the house was set on fire by order 
of General Hill, three men from the Third North Carolina In- 
fantry — Lieutenant Jim Clark was one of the three, also Jim 
Knight — volunteering to perform the duty. 

The order to advance was then given, and we moved up the 
slope of the hill until reaching the fence around the orchard, 
where we halted to give time for the left centre of the brigade to 
pass the obstruction of the burning house. (It was at this fence 
Ripley was hit in the throat). The house being passed, the 
Third North Carolina Infantry mounted over the fence and 
through the orchard, when the order was- given to change direc- 
tion to the left, to meet the pressure upon General Jackson, near 
what is known as the Dunkard Church, on the Sharpsburg- 
Hagerstown pike. This change of front was admirable, though 
executed under a heavy fire of infantry and artillery. Owing to 
this change our line of battle was five hundred yards further to 
the left than that of the early morning, when first ordered to ad- 
vance, which brought us in close connection with the troops of the 
right, and in the deadly embrace of the enemy. I use the word 
embrace in its fullest meaning. Here Colonel DeRosset fell, 
severely wounded, and permanently disabled, Captain Thruston 
taking command at once. 

It was now about 7 : 30 A. m. Jackson's troops were in the 
woods around and west of the Dunkard Church and north of the 
Sharpsburg-Hagerstown pike. As we came up he advanced and 
drove the enemy back across a corn field and into a piece of 
woods east and north of the church; here the enemy, being re- 
inforced by Mansfield's Corps of three divisions, returned to the 

186 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

assault, and the fight became desperate for an hour. The two 
weak divisions of Jackson aud one brigade of D. H. Hill fought 
and held in check the six divisions of Hooker and Mansfield. So 
tenaciously did these brave troops cling to the earth, that when 
re-inforced by Hood and two brigades of D. H. Hill, they were 
still north of the pike and contending for every inch of ground 
between it and the corn field in front. At the moment when 
their ammunition was absolutely exhausted, and all had been 
used from the boxes and pockets of their wounded and dead 
comrades, the re-inforcements of Hill and Hood, above referred 
to, came up and stayed the tide for a short time. Now Sumner, 
with his three divisions, put in an appearance, when our thin 
lines were slowly pressed back, by weight of numbers, into the 
woods and beyond the church to the edge of a field to the south, 
through which the? divisions of Walker and McLaws were 
hurrying to our assistance. When the Third North Carolina 
laid down on the edge of the field to allow their friends to pass 
over them to the front, there was not one single cartridge in the 
command, and every gun was empty. It was now about 10:30 
o'clock A. M., so that the men of this gallant regiment had been 
fighting vast odds for three hours, never quitting the field until 
absolutely pushed off, and not then until every cartridge of the 
living and the dead had been exhausted. 

One curious incident of this morning's battle was when Mans- 
field's Corps came into action a Federal division marched up, 
and halting in column of battalions in the west woods, part of 
the time within one hundred yards of the right of the Third 
North Carolina, made no effort to advance, although for five 
hundred yards to our right there was nothing to prevent its 
doing so. Nor did this division make any show of resistance 
until attacked b^ Colquitt's and Garland's Brigades (the latter 
under Colonel D. K. MacRae), when we were re-inforced by 
General Hill. The only grounds upon which we can account 
for this are that this division was covering the movements 
of Richardson and French, who were preparing to assault our 
centre, now desperately weakened, at a point now known as the 

Thied Regiment. 187 

"Bloody Lane." This conjecture is based on the fact that these 
two divisions did make an attaclc at that point a short time after 
Hill had sent his two brigades from that position to re-inforce 
the left, and just as Walker came to the relief of Hill. It is a 
fact, that for five hundred yards on our right, that is, from the 
right of the Third North Carolina to the left of Hill, there was 
a gap in our lines, directly in front of which, in the early part 
of the engagement, a Federal division halted and remained 
halted until it was filled by a part of Walker's Division. The 
gap existed, and the enemy was expected every minute to march 

In the June "Century" Longstreet (page 313) speaks of Col- 
onel Cooke's holding a fence without ammunition, while his staff 
(Longstreet's) fought two guns of the Washington Artillery. 
He does not say that while working the guns the Third North 
Carolina, having refilled its cartridge-boxes, and going to the 
front a second time, volunteered to relieve Colonel Cooke's 
Twenty-seventh North Carolina, and while doing so two more 
full batteries also came to his relief, from whose duels with the 
enemy the Third North Carolina suffered severely. He says 
nothing about my message to him by Lieutenant Craig, who 
rather exaggeratingly delivered it thus : " Captain sends his 
compliments, and requests re-inforcements, as he has only one 
man to every panel of fence, and the enemy is strong and very 
active in his front," and his reply : " Tell Captain Thruston he 
must hold his position if he has only one man to every sixteen 
panels of fence. I have no assistance to send him." Nor does 
he say how faithfully this order was obeyed, by which the regi- 
ment remained on that hill and under that fence, with the rails 
of which the enemy's artillery played battle-dore and shuttle- 
cock from midday of the 17th until 10 o'clock A. M. of the 18th, 
with not so much as one drop of water. Yet these are facts, 
and stand a monument to the soldierly endurance of the Third 
North Carolina on the memorable field of Sharpsburg. 

It was while riding with General D. H. Hill on the morn- 
ing of the 18th, to obtain a regiment to relieve the Third North 

188 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Carolina from that position at the fence, that he said: "Your 
regiment fought nobly yesterday." The words are well remem- 
bered, as we all know that a compliment from General Hill was 
of the rarest sort. 

The tenacity with which the Third Regiment held its ground 
in front of the Dunkard Church, entirely unsupported on its 
right, and with a very thin line on its left, with three separate lines 
of the enemy pelting it mercilessly in front and a reserve column 
standing like a hound in the leash on its immediate right, wait- 
ing its chance to pounce upon it as soon as any wavering was 
seen; its steadiness when ammunition began to run short, and 
the cartridge-boxes and pockets of the wounded and dead were 
emptied to meet its necessities; the sullen backward step, as inch 
by inch it was pressed from its line, all pronounce it, with voices 
loud, a fearless, enduring, self-reliant body of as glorious men 
as were ever led to battle. Every man seemed to know and feel 
the responsibility of his position ; seemed to know that there was 
no help to send him, and that he must do or die until relief 
had time to reach him from the rear, or Lee's army was doomed. 

And how thoroughly was that duty performed. Twice, be- 
fore any relief or re-inforeements came, did the regiment, when 
reduced to a handful, but that handful dauntless, stand and 
receive the volleys of the Federals at twenty paces, and then, 
with a yell, dash and drive back the foe. As Colquitt's Brigade 
dashed in splendidly on our right, the joyful yell : " Come on, 
boys; we've no ammunition, but we will go with you!" was 
heard over the din of battle. But human endurance has a limit. 
At this moment the third re-inforcement, in the shape of Sum- 
ner's Corps, was marched to the Federal assistance, and our 
brave boys were forced stubbornly and sullenly from the field. 
Their duty was nobly done; their -sacrifice had enabled Walker 
and McLaws to come up, and the day was saved. 

Thus was fought, and successfully, the battle of thg Third 
North Carolina Infantry at Sharpsburg; and if it had been re- 
tired from service and had not fired another gun, the endurance 
fearlessness, tenacity and valor of that day would have been a 

Third Eegiment. 189 

crown of glory suitable to adorn the brow of the bravest of the 
brave. In truth, this one North Carolina regiment was in the 
vortex of the fire, the pivot upon which success or annihilation 
turned, and thank God, it stood the test and saved the day. 

Of the twenty-seven officers who went into action on that 
memorable morning all save three were disabled and seven killed. 
Captain McNair, of Company H, was badly wounded in the leg 
early in the day, but refused to leave, although urged to do so 
by the Colonel, and soon after gave up his life-blood on his 
country's altar. 

The official report of the division commander gives the loss in 
the Third North Carolina, but it is less than was reported at the 
close of the day by Lieutenant J. S. F. Van Bokkelen, acting 
Adjutant, who stated that of the five hundred and twenty car- 
ried into action only one hundred and ninety could be accounted 

Ripley's Brigade, after bearing the brunt of the battle, was 
ordered to retreat, the enemy not pursuing. The manner of this 
retreat was slow and in order, and under General Hill's personal 
supervision. Observing an abandoned caisson, he (Hill) ordered 
the soldiers to remove it from the field, remarking : " We will 
not leave the enemy so much as a wheel." We continued the 
retreat to the Dunkard Church, on the Hagerstown road, where, 
after being supplied with ammunition, our lines were reformed, 
the enemy making no further demonstration on that day. The 
following day the troops rested on the field, in plain view of the 
enemy's lines, and during the night crossed the swollen Potomac 
at Shepherdstown, marched to Bunker Hill, where they biv- 
ouacked for several weeks, being employed in watching the 
enemy and tearing up the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad at night, 
near Martinsburg, Charlestown and Harper's Ferry. 

After resting several weeks in the lower valley the army 
moved by way of New Market Gap, passing Orange Court 
House in the direction of Fredericksburg. While in bivouac 
for the night near Gordonsville, General Hill issued orders re- 
quiring company commanders to see that the bare-footed men 

190 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

made moccasins for themselves of the hides just taken from the 
beeves, and the brigade continued its march to Port Royal, on 
the Rappahannock, whpre it remained for several days. On the 
morning of the 12th of December the troops moved back in the 
direction of Fredericksburg, marching the greater part of the 
night, and reached Hamilton's Crossing on the morning of the 
13th. This regiment was in the second line until the evening 
of the first day, when it took position in the first line. The 
enemy being driven back, we lay on the field, anticipating an- 
other furious battle, and " bitterly thought of the morrow," but 
no blood was shed this day. The enemy sent a flag of truce on 
the 14th, asking permission of General Jackson to remove his 
dead and wounded. The enemy retreated, and thus ended the 
first battle of Fredericksburg. 

After this the regiment built and occupied winter quarters on 
the Rappahannock, near Skinker's Neck. Here we spent the 
winter of 1862-'63 on picket duty along the river. While sta- 
tioned at this point this regiment, which had been in Major- 
General D. H. Hill's Division, was now changed to Jackson's old 
division, commanded by Major-General Trimble, and our gal- 
lant Georgia comrades, the Fourth and Forty-fourth Regiments, 
were exchanged for the Tenth, Twenty-third and Thirty-seventh 
Virginia Regiments. These regiments, with the First and Third 
North Carolina, formed a new brigade, and Brigadier-General 
R. E. Colston was assigned to command it. 

Lest the continuity in the promotion of the field officers should 
not be apparent to all, and especially such as are unacquainted 
with the military gradation below the rank of a general officer, 
we formulate it with the following result : After the death of 
Colonel Meares at Malvern Hill, Lieutenant-Colonel DeRosset 
was promoted to Colonel, Major Savage became Lieutenant- 
Colonel, and Captain S. D. Thruston, Major. You will observe 
in Colonel Thruston's account of :the battle of Sharpsburg (not 
report, as it appears, for it was written some years after the 
war) that he refers to himself as Captain; his commission as 
Major had not then reached him, owing to the rapid and uncer- 

Third Eegiment. 191 

tain direction of the movements of the army, and consequently 
the greater uncertainty of the mails. It not infrequently hap- 
pened that commissions were dated months prior to their being 
received by officers in the Army of Northern Virginia for whom 
they were intended. Subsequent to the battle of Sharpsburg 
Colonel Savage resigned on account of ill health, Major Thi'us- 
ton then became Lieutenant-Colonel, and Captain William M. 
Parsley was promoted to Major. Subsequently Colonel DeRosset 
resigned his commission, having been disabled by a wound re- 
ceived at Sharpsburg. By regular gradation then Lieutenant- 
Colonel Thruston became Colonel, Major Parsley became Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel, and Captain W. T,. Ennett was promoted to 
Major. Such was the personnel of the field officers prior to the 
battle of Chancellorsville, in May, 1863, and so it remained 
until the close of the war. The regiment was ever after this- 
time commanded either by Colonel Thruston or Lieutenant- 
Colonel Parsley, as further narration will show, save for three 
days after the death of Lieutenant-Colonel Parsley, which oc- 
curred April 6, 1865, and until the surrender, April 9, 1866, 
when Major Ennett was in command. 

On the 29th of April, 1863, this regiment, commanded by 
Lieutenant-Colonel S. D. Thruston, left its camp at Skinker's 
Neck and marched to Hamilton's Crossing, thence in the direc- 
tion of Chancellorsville. On the 2d of May, Saturday morning, 
was commenced that grand strategic movement which has since 
been the wonder and admiration of the world. Rapidly march- 
ing around the enemy's lines to his right and rear, crossing the 
plank-road and arriving on the old turnpike about 4 o'clock p. M., 
two and a half miles west of Chancellorsville, having marched 
in all more than fifteen miles in a few hours, and about five 
miles in a direct line from the starting point in the morning, 
Jackson's Corps had been detached from the main body of the 
army to make this attack. 

Regimental commanders were ordered to march in rear of 
their regiments, with a guard of strong men with fixed bayonets, 
to prevent straggling. Immediately on arriving at the stone 

192 North Carolina Troops, 1861-66. 

road the troops were formed in three lines of battle, Colston's 
Brigade being in the second line. The order to advance was 
obeyed with promptness. Rushing on toward the enemy's 
camp, the first scene that can be recalled is the abundant supply 
of beef and slaughtered rations cooking. The Federal General 
Schiramelfennig's Brigade suffered heavily as prisoners. The 
whole affair was a wild scene of triumph on our part. Thus we 
continued the pursuit until night, when the enemy made a stand 
within a mile of the Chancellor house. Here great confusion 
ensued. The two front lines having become mingled, were 
halted and reformed. Shortly after it was charged by a com- 
pany of Federal cavalry, which proved to be a part of the Eighth 
Pennsylvania. The greater portion of them were unhorsed and 
captured. This was a critical period in the battle, and General 
Jackson seemed unusually anxious. The iighting was kept up 
until night, when this regiment was relieved and put in the 
second line, and during the first part, and even up to midnight, 
they were exposed to a terrific cannonading. Our men were 
completely exhausted from the forced march and the three or 
four hours of brisk fighting. Our position had to be changed 
from the time that we were placed in the second line until about 
midnight, and most of the time without avail, until the enemy's 
fire ceased, before our men could get any rest. They would 
locate our troops in the second line and so time the fuses that 
their shells would explode just over our heads. 

On Sunday, the 3d instant, the regiment was formed on the 
right of the road, and, advancing, captured the first line of the 
enemy's works — a barricade of huge logs with abatis in front. 
The portion of these works that crossed a ravine and swamp, 
and which was favorable to the occupancy of the enemy, was 
assaulted three times by the Confederates before it was finally 
held. During one of these assaults Colonel Thruston was 
wounded, and the command devolved upon Lieutenant-Colonel 
Parsley, who remained in command during the campaign of 
1863, known as the Pennsylvania campaign. This regiment 
participated in the last two of these charges. It was then that 

Third Eegiment. 193 

General J. E. B. Stuart, who was in command (Generals Jack- 
son and Hill having been wounded on the evening before), or- 
dered the whole line forward. The enemy's earth-works in front 
were carried by storm, and many pieces of artillery, which had 
occupied them, were captured. We were now in full view of 
the Chancellor house, and the captured guns were turned on 
the fleeing enemy. Soon the Chancellor house was in flames, 
and a glorious victory perched upon our banners. 

The Confederate line was again moved forward, and executed 
a wheel to the left, bringing this brigade and regiment immedi- 
ately to the Chancellor house, hence this brigade, which had 
been commanded since early in the day by Lieutenant-Colonel 
Brown, of the First North Carolina Infantry, the other ofiicers 
of the brigade ranking him having been wounded,^was the first 
of the Confederate troops to reach the Chancellor house. Dur- 
ing one of these assaults alluded to above, this brigade'i^became 
detached from the division, and when it arrived at the Chancel- 
lor house was between two of Major-General Rodes' brigades. 
On the 6th the brigade marched to U. S. Ford. While here the 
enemy was permitted by General Lee to lay a pontoon bridge 
and send over .about one thousand ambulances to the battlefield 
of Chancellorsville for his wounded. The ofiicers of this regi- 
ment and brigade acted on the part of the Confederates to carry 
out these negotiations, General Sharp, Deputy Provost Marshal 
of the Army of the Potomac, acting on the part of the enemy. 
A whole week was consumed in effecting this object, after which 
the brigade was removed and operations resumed. The troops 
now returned to the vicinity of Fredericksburg. 

Early in June, 1863, soon after the Chancellorsville battle, 
Major-General Edward Johnson was assigned to command the 
Stonewall Division and General George H. Stewart, Colston's 
Brigade. The division was now composed of Paxton's, or the 
First Brigade, known as the Stonewall Brigade; Jones', or the 
Second Brigade; and Colston's, now George H. Stewart's, the 
Third Brigade, Lieutenant-Colonel Parsley being in command 
of the Third Eegiment. 

194 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

The army now marched in the direction of Winchester, cross- 
ing the Blue Ridge at Chester Gap and participating in the bat- 
tle of Winchester on the 13th and 14th June, 1863. This bri- 
gade marched all night, and by indirect route arrived at day- 
light on the 15th five miles below Winchester. This movement 
was intended to intercept and capture the fleeing troops of Gen- 
eral Milroy, who had been driven from Winchester on the pre- 
vious evening. After a sharp contest at Jordan Springs more 
than twenty-five hundred of the enemy threw down their guns. 
This engagement, though of short duration, was decidedly of an 
active character on both sides, and this regiment, as was its 
wont, was in the thickest of the fray. In this battle George 
Rouse, of Company D, was killed, and Lieutenant Craig and 
others wounded. Our position being in a railroad cut, we were 
in a great measure protected from the enemy's bullets. While 
Stewart's Brigade /om^i'/i^ the battle, a guard from the Stonewall 
Brigade was sent to Richmond with the prisoners, and were 
highly commended for gallantry, which praise belonged to this 

On the 18th June, 1863, the regiment crossed the Potomac at 
Shepherdstown and encamped near the Dunkard Church, in a 
piece of woods embraced in the battlefield of Sharpsburg. 

While here and in the quietude of twilight, when all nature 
seemed to be in repose, and so emblematic of those weary souls 
which slept peacefully under the sod of this spot, made so mem- 
orable by the heroism displayed by them scarcely a twelvemonth 
ago, the First and Third Regiments assembled, and with arms 
reversed and to the roll of the muflied drum marched to the bat- 
tlefield, where the Rev. George Patterson, Chaplain of the Third, 
read the burial services. A detail of men under the command 
of Lieutenant James I. Metts (afterwards Captain) had previ- 
ously during the day fired a military salute over the spot where 
their bodies were buried. Upon this solemn occasion many 
tears stole down the bronzed cheeks of the old veterans, and all 
heads were bowed in grief. 

From this camp the regiment, with the brigade, marched via 

Third Eegiment. 195 

HagerstowD to Chambersburg, Greencastle and McConnelsburg, 
to the vicinity of Carlisle, from which point we counter-marched, 
and after a very long and tiresome march, on the 1st of July, 
1863, arrived at Gettysburg about 7:30 o'clock, and filed to 
the left, nearly encircling the town. Here we lay in line of bat- 
tle until the evening of the 2d, when about 6 o'clock we were 
ordered forward. We were on the right of the brigade and were 
ordered to connect our right with the left of Nichols' (La.) Bri- 
gade, and at the same time by yvheel to the right to properly 
prolong their lines. We did so, thereby in some degree discon- 
necting our regiment from the rest of the brigade. We contin- 
ued to the front, driving the enemy's skirmishers before us with- 
out trouble, and with very little loss, until we met his line of 
battle at his first line of breastworks. He was, however, 
driven from those, and soon thereafter we received a front and 
oblique fire from behind his second line of breastworks, to 
which he had fallen back. He was soon driven from the por- 
tion from which we received the oblique fire, and then the fire 
from the front seemed even more terrific. A steady firing was 
kept up until 10 o'clock p. M., when, as by common consent, it 
ceased, re-opening at 4:30 o'clock next morning. We here 
found our ammunition nearly exhausted, some men having not 
more than two rounds. We partially refilled our cartridge-boxes 
from those of the dead and wounded, of whom there was a great 
number, and held this position that night and the next morning, 
exposed to a terrific fire until about 10:30 o'clock p. m., when 
we were ordered to move by the left flank along the line of the 
captured breastworks, and to cross them and form line with the 
rest of the brigade to charge the enemy's works on what was sup- 
posed to be his right flank. The few men then remaining in 
the regiment were formed on the right of the brigade and very' 
soon thereafter were ordered forward, the line advancing beauti- 
fully under the heaviest fire, until we found our regiment alone 
moving to the front, unsupported, when the officers and men 
were ordered to withdraw, which was done slowly and without 
confusion, the regiment being greatly reduced (one company — 

196 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Captain John Cowan's — and part of another being detached to 
fill up a space between the regiment and the Louisiana brigade). 
Too much praise cannot be given to the officers and men of our 
command for their coolness and bravery, for the promptness 
with which they obeyed all orders given them, and their untiring 
zeal generally. The enemy was driven back to the Baltimore 
turnpike in this charge by Stewart's Brigade, which came so 
near inflicting a critical blow on the enemy's extreme right flank. 
Had this gallant movement been supported the charge of Long- 
street would not have been necesssary. 

That last charge on the third day was a cruel thing for the 
Third. They had borne their full share of the engagement, not 
even enjoying the protection of the works they had captured 
from the enemy, by reason of their position, other regiments of 
the brigade happening by the fortunes of the battle to have them 
(breastworks) in their front. There they stood, heroes, holding 
their ground unprotected, receiving a most deadly fire, giving in 
turn, like true soldiers, what they could from their decimated 
ranks, most of their comrades being already down, dead or 
wounded, until ordered to the right to join the balance of the bri- 
gade to participate in the charge. 

The battle of Gettysburg is generally conceded to have been 
the hardest fought battle of the war on either side; at least of 
those in which General Lee's army was engaged. This regiment 
certainly suffered more in killed and wounded than in any of 
the many battles in which it was engaged. What fearful slaugh- 
ter it endured is shown beyond peradventure by the figures. 
Entering the battle with three hundred guns, it was greatly 
reduced by the killing and wounding of two hundred and twenty- 
three men. When the regiment was mustered after the battle, 
seventy-seven muskets were all that could be gotten in the ranks, 
and it lost no prisoners and had no stragglers. The loss was 
within a fraction of seventy-five per cent. Colonel Parsley, 
Captain E. H. Armstrong and Lieutenant Lyon were the only 
officers, perhaps, not killed or wounded. 

Next day we turned our faces toward Virginia, and after sev- 

Third Regiment. 197 

eral skirmishes and hard marches, arrived at Williamsport, Md., 
and forded the swollen Potomac on the 15th, the men having to 
put their cartridge-boxes on their bayonets to keep them above 
the water. After various marches via Front Royal and Page 
Valley, and with some skirmishing, we reached Orange Court 
House early in August and participated in the Bristow cam- 
paign in October, 1863, with an occasional skirmish with the 

Prior to going into winter quarters, while in bivouac, the 
order was given about noon of November 27th for the march 
instanter, probably to go in force on a reconnoitering expedition, 
as the sequel would seem to show. However, on the first and 
only day of the march, about 3 o'clock p. m. on November 27, 
1863, the battle of Payne's Farm was fought by Johnson's Di- 
vision, of which this regiment formed a part. This was de- 
cidedly one of the most unique battles, in all the details con- 
nected with it, in the annals of warfare, being conducted, seem- 
ingly, regardless of tactical evolutions. A body of troops march- 
ing slowly along a country road, with no idea that their progress 
would be impeded or their right to proceed peaceably questioned, 
indulging in the characteristic chat which was usual among 
troops of the "same persuasion," passing two or three cavalry- 
men dressed in gray, who had reined their horse to the side of 
the road and were quietly at a stand-still, ostensibly waiting for 
the column to pass, and when questioned by the men, as they 
would reach them, as to the whereabouts of the enemy, or in the 
usual vernacular, " have you seen any Yankees around this way ? " 
with the utmost assurance replying, " No, there are no Yankees 
within miles of this place." Imagine that under such condi- 
tions, and within a few minutes after the rear of the column had 
passed the point where the cavalrymen, who doubtless were' 
spies, were stationed, this small body of troops being suddenly 
fired upon; what consternation, demoralization, is likely to ensue 
among any troops, raw or veterans, and yet these heroes of many 
a hard-fought battle, who had been in so many perilous positions, 
stood the test of this hazardous situation. Skirmishers are at 

198 NoKTH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

once thrown out, and meet with a hot fire. They are confronted 
either by a line of skirmishers vastly outnumbering them, or by 
a close line of troops ; they are checked and have to be re-inforced 
to enable them to hold their ground. The enemy, which proved 
to be French's Corps of infantry, has evidently flanked us, for 
our line of battle is immediately formed perpendicular to our 
line of march, and facing the direction from which we were 
marching, and then begins as warm a contest as this regiment 
was ever engaged in for the same length of time. It seemed as 
if the enemy was throwing minnie-balls upon us by the bucket- 
full, when the battle got fairly under way. The First and Third 
North Carolina Regiments charged across a field and routed the 
men who were there in a skirt of woods and in their front. 
Our casualties were many for a fight of such short duration. 
General Johnson's horse was killed under him; he immediately 
mounted the horse of a courier and continued the direction of 
the battle. We drove the enemy back, completing the job by 
nightfall, and then pursued our way to Mine Run. So adroitly 
did General Johnson handle his troops at Payne's Farm, and so 
successfully did he extricate them from the chaotic situation de- 
scribed, being further successful in repelling the enemy who were, 
numerically, by long odds superior to his command, that he was 
complimented in a special congratulatory order by General Lee. 
Reaching Mine Run, we remained in line of battle several 
days. Pickets in force were of course kept out day and night. 
The weather was as cold as we ever experienced; raining, too, 
which added to the disagreeableness of the situation. The men 
on the picket-line were almost benumbed with cold, for fires were 
prohibited by special order, as if to emphasize the precarious 
situation at this particular juncture. Officers in command of 
the picket-lines did endeavor, and successfully, to keep up the 
spirits of the men; not that the men were wanting in patriotic 
fervor, or that their characteristic fortitude had abated one 
jot or tittle, but human endurance hath limits, and poorly fed, 
and worse clad, their sufi^ering was intense. When the men 
were stationed on the picket-line after dark, they remained sta- 

Third Regiment. 199 

tionary until relieved the next night, and were expected to be 
the eyes and ears of that particular post or point; for the inter- 
val between the pickets was short, and each man was required to 
exercise the extremest surveillance over that part assigned to him 
individually. There was a consolatory reflection even at that 
time, founded upon the hypothesis that "misery loves com- 
pany," to-wit, the enemy were in the same plight we were. 
There we lay, watching each other for several days, and beyond 
an occasional artillery duel, for a short time, and an occasional 
fire of musketry from one side or the other at some soldier 
who was sent out from one of the flanks to ascertain what he 
could, nothing occurred. The temperature was well down to 
zero and the biting cold was such as to chill the warmest resolu- 
tion, and when both sides marched (or stole) away, each was 

This ended the campaign of 1863, Wnd the regiment built and 
occupied winter quarters near the Rapidan River and did picket 
duty along that river at Mitchell's Ford during the winter 
1863-'64. The writers again find themselves under special 
obligations to Colonel S. D. Thruston, who has so vividly de- 
scribed events from the 4th to the 10th, when he was wounded; 
and as he says in an elaborate account covering those seven 
days : " The only object is simply to put upon record, for history, 
those men and comrades who at the time had no one to do that 
duty for them." 

On the morning of May 4, 1864, the brigade, commanded 
by General George H. Stewart, being on pfcket along the Rapi- 
dan, discovered the columns of the Federal army in the distance, 
moving to the right, and apparently to the river below. The 
order soon came to be ready to move, and at midday the brigade 
took up the line of march in the direction of Locust Grove, a 
point on the old stone pike running from Orange Court House 
to Fredericksburg. This point was reached and passed in the 
evening of the same day, and the brigade went into bivouac 
about two and one half miles beyond. The night was passed in 
quiet. The next morning (May 5th) about 10 :30 o'clock, a few 

200 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

scattering shots being heard in the front, the troops were called 
to arms and put in motion towards the firing. We soon discov- 
ered that the Sixth Corps of the Federal army was posted in line 
of battle, while the remainder of the Array of the Potomac 
was passing on the right, along the road from Germania Ford, 
immediately in the rear of this line to cover the movement. 
Ewell's Corps, our brigade forming a part, and the Sixth Fed- 
eral Corps were then both in what was known and always called 
the Wilderness, the name being derived from the character of 
the land, which is described as "covered with a matted growth 
of scrub oak, stunted pine, sweet-gum brush and dogwood," and 
the two corps of which we write were only separated by a few 
hundred yards. Stewart's Brigade was in column on the. pike a 
very few minutes after the firing began at 10:30 oclock A. M. 
Line of battle was immediately formed in the following order: 
The Third North Carolina to the right, the First North Caro- 
lina across, and the Virginia regiments to the left of the pike. 
It was now 10:30 o'clock a. m. (The line advanced and struck 
a stout line of Federal infantry in a thicket of pines skirting a 
field. This line of Federals was assaulted, and after a hard fight 
the Third North Carolina Regiment and the First North Caro- 
lina Regiment captured two pieces of artillery and more than one 
hundred prisoners. Here Colonel Jenkins, of the One Hundred 
and Forty-sixth New York Regiment, was killed. Lieutenant 
Shelton, commanding the battery (Battery D, New York Light 
Artillery), the captain, Winslow, having been wounded, at last 
surrendered two guns, howitzers, the other two escaping. We 
attempted to bring oiF the two guus captured, and did get them 
some distance, but the enemy, being re-inforced, made an ad- 
vance, and we were in turn driven back to our first position, 
leaving the guns between the lines. Preceding and up to the 
capture of the howitzers referred to the fighting was des- 
perate, muskets and their butt-ends and bayonets being used. 
At one time there was such an intermingling of troops that con- 
fusion decidedly predominated; every man was going it on his 
own hook, for it was a hand-to-hand contest. We recall that 

Thied Eegiment. 201 

in a gully which formed a part of the topography of this battle- 
field, and which ran for more than a brigade front, Confederates 
and Federals were so nearly on even terms, or at equal advan- 
tage, that they were simultaneously demanding each other to 
surrender. However we succeeded in establishing the superior- 
ity of our claim, and came off victors. It was now about 
2 o'clock p. M. No more fighting was .done on this front, save 
a few picket shots and a feeble attempt of the enemy late in the 
afternoon to recapture the two guns, which still remained be- 
tween the lines and at a point to which we had pulled them in the 
morning. This was a signal failure, and the repulse was largely 
assisted by the men of the First and Third North Carolina. 
After dark the two howitzers were brought in by details from 
the two North Carolina regiments. 

We would like just here, and in connection with the joint cap- 
ture of a section of that battery, to emphasize the afiinity which 
obtained between the First and Third North Carolina Infantry. 
Beginning their military career together, fate had not separated 
them for now three years; military duty of whatever kind that 
was assigned to one befell the other also; the glory of the one 
was the boast of the other, the misfortune of one the sorrow of 
the other; they achieved renown in common, they suffered de- 
feat together. 

In the early morning of the 6th, Stewart's Brigade was closed 
in to the left, until its right rested on the pike, with Jones' 
(Virginia) Brigade on its right, which connected with the left 
of Battle's (Alabama) Brigade. Several vigorous attempts were 
made during the day by the enemy by attack upon that quarter, 
to force the line to the left, but they were as vigorously repulsed, 
and then we would return to our position of the morning. 

The morning of the 7th revealed the enemy gone, and the 
day was spent by the men in congratulations. Late in the even- 
ing of this day the brigade began closing or extending — cannot 
call it marching — to the right, which continued during the en- 
tire night, the men having no time for rest or sleep. The morn- 
ing of the 8th dawned bright and hot. The line of march was 

202 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

taken up and pushed with vigor, notwithstanding the heat, dust, 
parching thirst and smoke and fire of burning woods. The 
nature of the march was sufficient to convince those heroes that 
their presence was required to meet the foe on some other field, 
and gallantly did they toil through the day. As the sun was 
hiding behind the western wood the brigade was thrown in line 
to the support of General Rodes' Division, in front of the 
Spottsylvania court-house, but was not engaged. After dark it 
marched and counter-marched in search of a position, and at 10 
P. M. was formed in line and ordered to throw up works in that 
salient which proved so disastrous on the 12th following. By 
daylight of the 9th, in spite of the fatigue and loss of sleep on 
the night of the 7th and the terrible march of the 8th, the en- 
tire brigade, with no tool except the bayonet and tin plate, was 
intrenched behind a good and defensible rifle-pit. This day was 
spent in strengthening the lines, scouting to the front, and that 
sleep, so much needed. The works or fortifications referred to 
assumed the shape of, and were always designated as, the "horse- 
shoe." The morning of the 10th found the brigade closed to the 
right, connecting with the left of Hill's Corps, with Jones' Bri- 
gade on our left, occupying the works in the salient proper. 
Late in the afternoon Doles' Brigade, whose position was on the 
left of Jones' Brigade, was attacked about sunset, and was 
pressed back upon Stewart's rear, followed closely by the exul- 
tant enemy. Orders to "Fall in," "Take arms," "Face by the 
rear rank," and "Forward" were repeated in quick succession. 
The brigade responded with alacrity, and soon was moving 
steadily, though moving in line of battle by the rear rank, 
through a small strip of woods into a field (in which stood a 
dwelling), and there meeting the enemy, immediately attacked. 
The work here was sharp and quick, resulting in the repulse of 
the Federals across and out of Doles' works and their occupation 
by Stewart. It was, however, soon discovered that Stewart did 
not cover Doles' entire front to the left, and fifty or more of the 
enemy were having a happy time enfilading the lines. Lieu- 
tenant Robert Lyon, with Company H, Third North Carolina — 

Third Eegimejit. 203 

the then left company — was formed across and perpendicularly 
to the line, and, moving promptly down the left, drove them off. 
Before this could be accomplished the Third North Carolina, on 
the left, had suffered severely. Many men were wounded, in- 
cluding Colonel S. D. Thruston, seriously, and Lieutenant 
Cicero H. Craige and Sergeant-major Robert C. McRee were 
killed. Lieutenant-Colonel Parsley, of course, after Colonel 
Thruston was wounded, was in command of the regiment. The 
brigade was then moved back to its original position and re- 
mained inactive throughout the 11th. Just after night-fall of 
the 11th the artillery, for some reason or other which was never 
apparent to those not high in authority, if to them, was removed 
from their position on this part of the line, and for aught we 
know, from all parts, the direct effect of such withdrawal, com- 
mencing to be felt on the 12th, was never fully recovered from. 
We had great generals, but they were human, and "to err is 
human." At the peep of dawn on May 12, 1864, dark and 
rainy, an attack was made by the Federals en masse on Jones' 
Brigade, occupying the salient angle of this doomed "horse- 
shoe," the shock of which was felt throughout the entire Con- 
federacy. No pen can adequately portray what occurred then 
and there. The weather, thus early, was a fitting prelude to a 
day that eventuated in so great sorrow and anguish. The ele- 
ments seemed to portend impending fate — ^hopes blasted, aspira- 
tions crushed. The First North Carolina was on the right of 
Jones' Brigade, and their commander, the brave Colonel Hamil- 
ton A. Brown, says: "For a short time the fighting was des- 
perate. The terrific onslaught of this vast multitude was irre- 
sistible, there being a rectangular mass of twenty thousand Fed- 
eral troops, not in line of battle, but in column of regiments 
doubled on the centre, supported by a division on each flank — 
in all more than thirty thousand concentrated against this one 
point. The portion of the works assaulted by this formidable 
column was little more than four hundred yards wide. The 
Confederate troops occupying this angle were Jones' Brigade 

204 NoETH Carolina Teoops, 1861-'65. 

and the First North Carolina Eegiment, numbering about two 
thousand." The clash of arms and the murderous fire around 
this bloody angle are indescribable. 

The enemy sweeping to the right and rear of the fortifications 
and striking the Third North Carolina Regiment, which ad- 
joined the First North Carolina, and capturing that entire regi- 
ment, with very few escapes, pursued their way into the lines of 
A. P. Hill's Corps, making many captures there. Lieutenant- 
Colonel Parsley, commanding the Third North Carolina Infan- 
try on that morning, and who was captured in his works, says : 
"Stewart faced the rear rank and continued to fight inside the 
lines until a second column attacked him in front, when, find- 
ing himself betweeen two fires at short range, he was compelled 
to surrender." At what particular point the enemy was checked 
on our right we do not know, as we were captured with Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Parsley. The prisoners of war hauled in by the 
Federals on that morning we have heard estimated at three 
thousand, including Major-General Edward Johnson, Brigadier- 
General Stewart and other brigadiers, and very many field and 
line officers. Captain E. H. Armstrong was killed. Some asper- 
sion has been cast, and that, too, by one high in command, upon 
Jones' Brigade, for not holding their ground when attacked that 
morning (12th). Such a judgment, in our opinion, is not only 
at fault, but has a tinge of garrulous fatuity, or is predicated 
upon malevolence. In the name of all that is reasonable, fair, 
or an equitable decision as to another, how could about two 
thousand men, probably less, withstand the combined attack of 
thirty thousand men, concentrated upon a point of four hundred 
yards, and resist them successsfully, and that, too, without an 
important arm of the service (the artillery) aiding them, for, as 
we have said, it had been removed from their front ? Remem- 
ber this was in an open space. The breastworks referred to were 
trenches, in depth not more than four and one- half or five feet. 
We have said this much in sheer justice to Jones' Brigade, for 
we do not believe that any similar number of troops could be 

Thied Regiment. 205 

found anywhere who could have done more than was done by 
them. We count any brigade fortunate which was not exposed 
to such a test. 

At this time such portions of the First and Third Regiments 
as were not captured on May 12th were consolidated and placed 
in General W. R. Cox's Brigade. 

On the night of May 21st the army was withdrawn from its 
position to meet the enemy, who had retired toward the North 
Anna. On the morning of the 23d we confronted the enemy 
near Hanover Junction, where the line of battle was formed and 
earth-works thrown up. May 24th the enemy attacked the sharp- 
shooters and drove them from their position, but after a sharp 
and hand-to-hand fight for several minutes they were driven to 
the opposite side of the breastworks and the assault was con- 
tinued several hours. The enemy several times attempted to 
recapture the works, but were as often repulsed. A heavy rain 
having set in and darkness approaching, the enemy retired. 
Shortly after dark the army retired towards Richmond to meet 
the enemy, who were moving in the same direction. Nothing 
save frequent skirmishing occurred until the afternoon of May 
30th, on which the battle of Bethesda Church occurred. Further 
skirmishing took place May 31st, June 1st, and the battle of 
Gaines' Mill, June 2d, and Cold Harbor, June 3d, in all of 
which the First and Third (consolidated) participated. After the 
battle of Cold Harbor, June 3d, the Second Corps, composed of 
Ramseur's, Rodes' and Gordon's Divisions, under the command 
of General Early, was directed to proceed to the Valley of Vir- 
ginia for the purpose of destroying or capturing Hunter, who 
was in camp near Lynchburg. General Breckinridge and Major- 
General Robert Ransom, commanding the cavalry, were awaiting 
our arrival. Hunter, upon learning of the arrival of the Confeder- 
ates on the 18th, under the cover of night, made a hasty retreat. 
Early on the morning of the 19th we commenced pursuit, and 
just before night overtook the enemy's rear at Liberty, where a 
skirmish ensued, and again at Buford's Gap, on the afternoon of 
the 20th. The pursuit was continued on the 21st through 

206 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Salem, Va., where another skirmish took place. After resting a 
day, we resumed the march in the direction of the Potomac River, 
reaching Staunton on the morning of the 27th, then marched in 
the direction of Harper's Ferry, which was reached on the 
morning of July 4th. Here Bolivar Heights was captured 
about 10 o'clock a. m., and about 8 o'clock p. M. the enemy were 
driven from Harper's Ferry across the river to Maryland 
Heights. On the 6th the corps crossed the Potomac at Shep- 
herdstown, and engaged the enemy in the rear of Maryland 
Heights. The battle continued nearly all day. We moved 
through Crampton's Gap toward Frederick, and after many 
skirmishes reached Frederick Md., on the morning of the 9th, 
where General Wallace's Division of Federals was strongly 
posted on the eastern bank of the Monocacy River. After a 
stubborn fight the enemy was driven from the field, leaving in 
our hands six or seven hundred prisoners, besides killed and 
wounded. Our loss in killed and wounded was severe. The 
march was resumed on the 10th in the direction of Washington 
City. As the weather was hot and the roads dusty, it was very 
trying to our troops, who arrived in front of Fort Stevens on the 
evening of the 11th, within sight of the dome of the Federal 
Capitol. After reconnoitering and skirmishing a couple of days, 
and upon hearing of the arrival of two additional corps at Wash- 
ington from the Army of the Potomac, our troops were with- 
drawn on the night of the 12th, and we crossed the Potomac on 
the night of the 15th near Leesburg, followed by the enemy's 
cavalry. We then moved towards the Valley of Virginia, 
crossing the Blue Ridge at Snicker's Gap on the 17th of July, 
the Federals slowly following. On the afternoon of the 18th 
Rodes' Division attacked the enemy at Snicker's Ford, di-iving 
them in the Shenandoah River, where they lost heavily in killed 
and drowned. On the 19th the division moved towards Stras- 
burg, and on the afternoon of the 20th to the support of General 
Ramseur, but arrived after the engagement had ceased. The 
division then retired to Fisher's Hill, remaining until the enemy 
was attacked at Kernstown, on the 24th, and driven across the 

Third REaiMENT, 207 

Potomac into Marylaud. Rodes' Division then marched and 
counter-marched between the Potomac and Fisher's Hill until 
September 22d, during which time it was engaged almost 
daily in skirmishing, and took part iu the battles of Winchester, 
August 17th; Charlestown, August 21st; Smithfield, August 
29th; Bunker Hill, September 3d; second battle of Winchester, 
September 19th ; Fisher's Hill, September 22d. On the morning 
of September 19th this division, while moving in column up the 
Martinsburg road to the support of General Ramseur, who was 
engaged with Sheridan's army near Winchester, was unex- 
pectedly called to attention, faced to the left and moved forward 
to engage the enemy, who had advanced to within one hundred 
yards of the road. After a brief and vigorous assault the Fed- 
erals commenced falling back, and were driven through the 
woods and the open fields until Cooke's Brigade was brought to 
a temporary halt and Cox received orders to push forward his 
brigade. At this time General Rodes was shot in the head by a 
ball, and fell from his horse. The troops pushed on, unaware 
of this calamity, and struck a weak line of the enemy. At this 
point the Federals were severely punished, and fell back, leaving 
their killed and wounded. A large number of officers and men, 
who were secreted in a ditch, were captured. We pursued the 
enemy with a hot fire beyond the crest of a hill, on which 
Grimes had established his line. Here Evans' Brigade, upon 
meeting a heavy fire, fell back, which exposed this brigade to 
a concentrated, direct and left-oblique fire. At the request of 
General Cox, a battery was placed on a hill in our rear, and the 
brigade fell back and formed behind it, which opened with tell- 
ing effect upon the enemy's heavy lines. They laid down, and 
the victory appeared to be ours. While our loss in men and offi- 
cers had been severe, the troops had good spirits. Here Colonel 
S. D. Thruston -was severely wounded, the command devolving 
upon Lieutenant-Colonel Parsley. After remaining until about 
4 o'clock in the afternoon, we discovered that the Federals were 
in our rear, and fell back in good order to the Martinsburg pike 
and formed on the left of our troops. Here we were exposed, 

208 NoETH Carolina Teoops, 1861-66. 

without any protection, to a heavy artillery fire, which was tell- 
ing upon our men. We were then faced about and commenced 
retiring deliberately to the hills, all the troops conforming to 
this movement. General Early, through a stafi' officer, directed 
General Cox to return, when we were faced about and moved to 
the front. Upon reaching the turnpike, we were ordered by 
General Early to fall back, which we slowly accomplished. Our 
troops now retreated toward Fisher's Hill. While retreating in 
column, this brigade was ordered to protect the artillery then 
passing. Facing about, we were deployed, and advanced be- 
tween the enemy's cavalry and our artillery, which was done 
with great spirit and promptness. In this manner we moved on, 
protecting the artillery until near dusk, when we found General 
Ramseur with his division thrown across the turnpike to prevent 
pursuit. About the time this brigade and the artillery crossed 
his line the enemy made a spirited charge to capture the guns, 
which was met with a well-directed fire from Ramseur's men, 
which stopped further pursuit. After our defeat at Winchester 
we fell back and formed line of battle behind Fisher's Hill. 
After the fall of General Rodes, General Ramseur was placed in 
charge of his division. On the 22d we had a skirmish with 
the enemy. About dusk the brigade was promptly formed 
across the road to cover the retreat. We advanced rapidly to 
a fence, where we met the enemy in a hand-to-hand encounter, 
repulsed him, and stopped pursuit for the night. Here Colonel 
Pendleton, of the artillery, fell, mortally wounded. After the 
defeat at Fisher's Hill we fell back up the Valley as far as 
Waynesboro, where re-inforcements were received. October 1st 
we returned down the Yalley, reaching Fisher's Hill on October 
13th, and there formed behind breastworks. A flanking move- 
ment was directed by General Early, and we commenced mov- 
ing soon after dark. The night was consifmed by a very 
fatiguing and exhausting march, which was conducted with the 
greatest secrecy. We crossed Cedar Creek at early dawn, being 
joined- here by Payne's Cavalry, who at full speed advanced 
upon and captured Sheridan's headquarters. But for his ab- 

Third Eegiment. 209 

sence they would have captured him. The first warning Crook's 
Corps had of our presence was the rebel yells and volleys of 
our musketry, which sent them hastily from their camp, leav- 
ing all behind. This victory was delightful to our troops, after 
so many repulses. So great was the demoralization of the enemy 
after this little brigade drove back a division ten times its num- 
ber, meeting with but slight resistance, that by 8 o'clock we had 
captured all of their artillery and from one thousand five hun- 
dred to two thousand prisoners. The Federals were in retreat. 
About 3 o'clock in the afternoon Sheridan, having joined and 
rallied his troops, the tide of battle was turned, and the Confed- 
erates were driven up the Valley to New Market. Here Major- 
Geueral Ramseur was killed endeavoring to rally his troops, 
where they remained until about the 22d of November, when 
Ramseur's Division routed General Sheridan, commanding a 
considerable body of cavalry, between New Market and Mount 
Jackson. This ended the Valley campaign of 1864, and Briga- 
dier-General Bryan Grimes was promoted to Major- General, and 
assigned to the command of this division. About a week before 
Christmas this regiment and other troops composing the Second 
Corps returned to Petersburg and went into winter quarters at 
Swift Creek, about three miles north of the city. About the 
middle of February, 1865, we moved to Southerland's Depot, on 
the right of the Army of Northern Virginia. Here the regiment 
remained until the middle of March, when it was ordered into the 
trenches in front of Petersburg, where it remained until the 
night of the 24th of March, when General Gordon's Corps, this 
brigade forming a part, was massed opposite Hare's Hill, where 
the distance between the lines was, one hundred yards. On the 
morning of the 25th the division corps of sharji-shooters, com- 
manded by Colonel H. A. Brown, surprised and captured the 
enemy's pickets and entered his main lines. This regiment, 
with the other troops of the division immediately following, oc- 
cupied the enemy's works for some distance on either side of 
Hare's Hill, and held them against great odds for about five 
hours, during which time the enemy poured a deadly fire into the 


210 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Confederates from several batteries, and having massed large 
bodies of infantry, forced the withdrawal of the Confederates, 
with considerable loss in killed, wounded and prisoners. We 
then resumed our position in the trenches. About 11 o'clock on 
the night of April 1st the enemy opened a heavy cannonading 
all along the line, under cover of which they attacked in heavy 
forces at several points, making a break in the division on our 
right. On Sunday morning, the 2d, at daylight, they made a 
breach in the line held by the brigade of the left centre of the 
division, and occupied our works for some distance on either side 
of Fort Mahone. The division attacked the enemy at close 
quarters, driving him from traverse to traverse, sometimes in a 
hand-to-hand fight, until the works were retaken up to a point 
opposite Fort Mahone, which was finally captured. The Con- 
federates thus regained the entire works taken from the division 
in the early morning. The enemy, however, promptly moved 
forward and recaptured the Confederate line and Fort Mahone, 
leaving Grimes' Division still in possession of that portion of the 
line retaken from the enemy in the early part of the day, and 
which was held until the lines in front of Richmond and Peters- 
burg were opened, when we, with the army, commenced to 
retreat. Marching day and night, with only short intervals of 
rest, we reached Amelia Court House on April 4th, where the ex- 
hausted troops rested a few hours. Being closely pursued by 
the enemy, the march was resumed that night. 

General Bryan Grimes, then Major-General commanding the 
division, was assigned to the position of rearguard. General Cox 
still commanding our brigade and Lieutenant-Colonel Parsley 
the regiment. The enemy's cavalry, elated over their successes, 
frequently rode into the Confederate lines, making it necessary to 
form a line of battle across the road in column of brigade, while 
the others continued to march. This running fight continued until 
the afternoon of the 6th, when at Sailor's Creek, near Farmville, 
Va., a general engagement ensued, where the Confederates, over- 
whelmed by superior numbers, retreated along the bridge at 

Third Regiment. 211 

Farmville. Here the gallant hero, Lieutenant-Colonel Parsley, 
gave up his life, being shot in the head with a minnie-ball. 

Who ever knew Willie Parsley, that did not love him? We 
write not the empty words of the mere panegyrist; we speak 
the words of a candid soberness and truth. He so impressed all 
with whom he came in contact that no one who ever met ever 
forgot him. He was the soul of honor. Without fear, he was 
without reproach. Knowing how to obey, he was the better 
fitted to command. There was not the semblance of dissimula- 
tion in any trait of his character. You always felt after an in- 
terview with him that he was guided and controlled by an hon- 
esty of purpose. He commanded in an especial degree the esteem 
and confidence of his superior officers. A report emanating from 
Colonel Parsley, they knew, told the exact status of the subject- 
matter upon which they were seeking information. They fre- 
quently came to his headquarters socially and enjoyed his hospi- 
tality. On duty he was the officer; duty done, he was the kind, 
genial gentleman and friend. Strictly conscientious in the dis- 
charge of his religious obligations, no asceticism marred the 
beauty and symmetry of a well-ordered life. The scales of jus- 
tice in his hands were well poised between his company officers 
and the rank and file in their commands. Every man in his 
regiment could appeal to him and be heard. Young in years, 
he was experienced in true wisdom, and would have been a most 
capable officer in any of the gradations of rank. Killed in the 
battle of Sailor's Creek, at the early age of twenty-four, no Con- 
federate soldier who yielded up his life was more sincerely 
mourned, and no one remembered with more grateful recol- 

Beyond Farmville, on the morning of the 7th, the division 
charged the enemy and recaptured a battery of artillery which 
had been taken by him. We continued the march towards 
Lynchburg upon a parallel road to that the enemy had taken for 
the purpose of intercepting us. We reached Appomattox Court 
House on Saturday evening, the 8th, where the exhausted troops 
bivouacked until about the middle of night, when this division 

212 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

was ordered from the position of rearguard to the front to open 
the road towards Lynchburg, now occupied by the enemy in 
large force. About sunrise on Sunday morning, April 9, 1865, 
this division (Grimes') engaged a large body of the enemy's 
cavalry, supported by infantry, and drove them more than a 
mile, capturing a battery and several prisoners. While engaged in 
this pursuit, they were ordered back to a valley. This brigade 
was commanded by the veteran soldier, General W. E.. Cox, 
who, as his men were retiring, ordered a halt, and the command 
was given: "Right about, face!" to meet a cavalry force which 
was coming down upon him. It was promptly obeyed, and 
once more and for the last time, these valiant, ragged, foot-sore 
and half-starved North Carolinians withstood in the strength of 
their invincible manhood the men whom they had met and 
driven back on many a bloody iield. In the clear and firm voice of 
the gallant Cox the command rang out : "Ready, Aim, Fire!" 
and the last volley fired by the Army of Northern Virginia was by 
these North Caroli/ia troops, this regimen! among the number. 
Defeated, but not dishonored ! On leaving the valley, we learned 
the sad intelligence that the Army of Northern Virginia had 
surrendered. Sad and gloomy indeed were the faces of those 
noble heroes, who could not realize that General Lee would ever 

The fragment of the First and Third Regiments, commanded 
by Major W. T. Ennett, since the loss of Colonel Parsley on the 
6th, was bivouacked with the brigade (Cox's), Grimes' Division, 
Gordon's Corps, and prepared the muster-rolls for the final capit- 
ulation. Od the morning of April 12th they laid down their 
arms, dispersed on foot, many ragged and without shoes, and 
made their way to their desolated homes. 

And now let us recite the " roll of honor" : Colonel Gaston 
Meares, killed in the battle of Malvern Hill ; Captain Thomas 
E. Armstrong, killed in the battle of Chancellorsville; Captain 
John F. S. Van Bokkelen, wounded in the battle of Chancellors- 
ville, died within a month afterwards. 

It was with grief, and that, too, without alloy, that the death 

Third Regiment. 213 

of Captain Van Bokkelen, which occurred in Richmond, Va., 
was announced to the regiment while on the march in the cam- 
paign of 1863. He was universally popular and almost idolized 
by his own men. But twenty-one years of age, and full of youth- 
ful ardor, intelligent, with an acute conception of his duties and 
an indomitable energy in pursuing the line of conduct which a 
discriminating judgment dictated, to him, possibly, more than to 
any other officer of the company which he commanded, was due 
the high morale to which that company attained. 

Captain David Williams, Captain E. H. Rodes, Captain E. G. 
Meares, Lieutenants Duncan McNair, Thomas Cowan and Wil- 
liam Quince, killed in the battle of Sharpsburg; Lieutenants 
Tobias Garrison, Henry A. Potter and Thomas Kelly, killed in 
the battle of Gettysburg; Captain E. H. Armstrong, Lieutenant 
Cicero H. Craige and Sergeant-major Robert C. MoRee, killed 
in the battle of Spottsylvania; Lieutenant-Colonel W. M. Pars- 
ley, killed in the battle of Sailor's Creek, near Farmville; and 
that host of non-commissioned officers and privates (would that 
their names were accessible to us, that we might locate each in- 
dividual as to company and record his merit) who yielded their 
lives under the banner of the Confederacy. Good soldiers and 
true men they were, discharging duty under any and all condi- 
tions. Their hearts' blood flecked the soil of Virginia, Mary- 
land and Pennsylvania, and the fields of battle in those three 
States attest their prowess. 

Nor yet would the history of the Third North Carolina In- 
fantry be complete without reciting the names of Dr. J. F. 
McRee, Surgeon, and Doctors Josh C. Walker, Kenneth Black 
and Thomas F. Wood, the well-beloved and faithful physicians, 
Captain Roger P. Atkinson, Captain R. S. Radcliffe, Captain Wil- 
liam A. Gumming, Major W. T. Ennett, Lieutenant Amos Sid- 
bury, Lieutenant Ward, Lieutenant-Colonel Edward Savage, 
Captain Richard F. Langdon, Lieutenants I. J. Pickett, S. P. 
Hand, George B. Baker, N. A. Graham, L. Moore, W. H. Barr 
and Robert H. Lyon, who have all died since the capitula- 
tion. Adjutant Theodore C. James has also crossed "the narrow 

214 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

stream of death." Our pen falters when we attempt to pay tribute 
to his memory: companion of our youth, friend of our manhood. 
For him to espouse a cause was to make it a part of his very self. 
Intrepid, no more courageous soldier trod the soil of any battle- 
field upon which the Army of Northern Virginia encountered a 
foe. The impulses of his nature were magnanimous; no grovel- 
ing thoughts unbalanced the equity of his judgment. True to 
his friends and to principle, he remained as "constant as the 
northern star, of whose true, fixed and resting quality there is 
no fellow in the firmament." Leaving his right arm upon a 
battlefield of Virginia, and exempt for that cause from further 
military duty, he disdained any privilege which such disability 
brought to him, but continued in active service until the last 
shot had been fired and " arms stacked " forever. 

We have endeavored to compile a correct history of the 
regiment with which we served as Confederate soldiers. If 
errors of commission have crept in, or if there be any of omis- 
sions, it is with sincere regret on our part; nor should they have 
occurred, save that we were ignorant of them. The memories of 
the martyrs of the " lost cause" are too precious to be relegated 
to oblivion through any laches on the part of those who could 
prevent it, or whose duty it is to preserve them. A duty owed 
first to the dead — and to the living. 

John Cowan, 

James I. Metts. 

Wilmington, N. C., 

9th April, 1900. 


By colonel W. L. DeROSSET. 

Gaston Meares, of Wilmington, N. C, was appointed by Gov- 
ernor Ellis to the command of the Third Regiment of State 
Troops, and Robert Harper Cowan and William Lord DeRosset 
were commissioned, respectively, Lieutenaot-Colouel and Major 
of the same regiment. 

Steps were at once taken to form the regiment, first from 
material already partially organized into companies and partly 
by regular enlistments under company officers likewise appointed 
by the Governor. 

This regiment, one of ten authorized by «the Constitutional 
Convention to be raised, enlisted for the war, and all officers 
were appointed by the Governor, with the understanding clearly 
had that all vacancies should be filled by promotion or appoint- 
ment by recommendation of the commanding officer. 

[The companies, with names of their respective captains, and 
counties from which raised, are given in the sketch of Captains 
Cowan and Metts, page 178, ante.] 

The several companies were ordered to assemble at the camp 
of instruction at Garysburg as faet as their ranks were filled, 
and in the latter part of May they began to report to the officer 
in charge of the camp. 

Colonel Meares and Lieutenant-Colonel Cowan reported at 
the camp about June 1st. Major DeRosset, having been ordered 
to Fort Macon to relieve Colonel C. C. Tew, of the Second North 
Carolina Regiment, of the command of that post, was delayed in 
joining his command until some two weeks later. Meanwhile, 
the men were being drilled in the school of the soldier, prepara- 
tory to company drill ; and so soon as Major DeRosset reported 

216 North Carolina Troops, 1861-66. 

for duty he was ordered to take charge of the drilling and dis- 
ciplining of the force. 

Colonel Meares moved West from Wilmington, where he was 
born, when quite a young man and settled in Arkansas, whence 
he went into the war with Mexico as Adjutant of one of the 
first regiments raised in that State ; subsequently being elected 
to command on the death of its colonel (Yell). At the begin- 
ning of our late difficulty he reported for duty to the Governor 
and was at once commissioned as Colonel. 

Lieutenant-Colonel Robert H. Cowan was also a native of 
Wilmington, and was prominent in the politics of the State, 
both locally and as a Representative in its legislative halls. 
Upon the reorganization of the twelve months regiments, he 
was elected Colonel of the Eighteenth, thus severing his connec- 
tion with the Third in May, 1862. 

Major DeRosset, likewise a native of the same place, had been 
connected with the local military for seven years, most of the 
time as an officer of the Wilmington Light Infantry, having 
carried that company into service, which was later assigned to 
the Eighteenth. 

A portion of the Third was ordered to Richmond early in 
July, where it was joined some we'eks later by the remaining 
companies which had been left at Garysburg under Major De- 

A few days after the first battle of Manassas the regiment was 
ordered to report to Major- General T. H. Holmes, at Acquia 
Creek, and went into camp n^ar Brooks' Station, on the Rich- 
mond, Fredericksburg & Potomac Railroad, later moving camp 
to a point near the Potomac River, and, as winter approached, 
having meantime built substantial winter quarters, they took up 
their abode therein, immediately in rear of the lower battery of 
those constructed for the defense of Acquia Creek. 

Upon the evacuation of the line of the Potomac the Third 
North Carolina, with the First, was ordered to Goldsboro to 
meet a supposed advance of Burnside from New Bern, remain- 
ing thereabouts until early in June, 1862. In May, Lieutenant- 

Thied Eegiment. 217 

Colonel Cowan having been promoted, Major DeRosset was 
made Lieutenant-Colonel, and Captain Savage, Major. 

The First and the Third North Carolina Troops were under 
the same brigade commanders from first to last, but, unfortunately, 
were always brigaded with troops from other States, and never 
received the deserved meed for their achievements. 

First, Colonel John G. Walker was assigned to command, the 
brigade then consisting of the First and Third North Carolina 
and the Thirtieth Virginia and First Arkansas; but Colonel 
Walker proved to be the junior colonel in the brigade, and 
General Holmes asked for and obtained a commission for him as 
brigadier-general, and he continued in command. 

Brigadier-General Roswell S. Ripley next had its command, 
and upon reaching Richmond on the evening of the last day's 
fight at Seven Pines a change was made in the composition of 
the brigade and the Fortieth and Forty-fourth Georgia Regi- 
ments took the places of the Virginia and Arkansas troops. 

The Third reached the battlefield only in time to be held in 
reserve late in the evening, but were not ordered to participate. 

The march from Richmond was most trying to the raw troops 
of the brigade, who had not then received their baptism of fire, 
passing thousands of dead and wounded from the time they left 
the cars until they arrived on the field; and the groans and cries 
of the wounded were not calculated to inspire the boys with a 
martial spirit. During the period from that date to the opening 
of the battles around Richmond the command was in camp about 
six miles from Richmond, drilling and preparing for the sum- 
mer campaign. 

Late in the evening of June 25, 1862, Colonel Meares received 
orders to march, and proceeding early next morning in a north- 
erly direction, was halted on the high hills on the south of the 
Chickahominy where it is crossed by the Mechanicsville pike. 

Lieutenant- Colonel DeRosset was here again detached and 
ordered to take charge of a battalion composed of one company 
from each regiment, and to advance, crossing' the stream, to 
Mechanicsville; but after reaching the middle of the creek he was 

218 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

ordered to assemble his command and cross on the bridge. The 
battalion was thus thrown on the left of the brigade, advancing 
left in front, and, on being drawn up in line of battle on the 
north side, went into action, charging the enemy's position, which 
was well fortified on the further side of a small stream about 
one-half mile from the pike. The brigade suffered severely in 
this attack, mainly from the stupid manner in which it was put 
into action. The Forty-fourth Georgia was almost annihilated, 
having lost heavily in killed and wounded, the others mostly 
routed. The Fortieth Georgia lost its colonel early in the action, 
and were more or less demoralized. The First North Carolina 
perhaps suffered in killed and wounded more than either of the 
regiments, if not of all combined. They had the misfortune to 
be immediately in front of the heaviest of the Yankee batteries, 
which swept the approaches with grape and canister continuously. 
The Third North Carolina lost perhaps less than either of the 
others, Major Savage being the only one of the field officers 

Joining after that battle the forces of General Jackson, the 
command was marched by a circuitous route to Cold Harbor, or 
Gaines' Mill, where the battle took place on the afternoon of 
June 27th. Here but a small fraction of the Third was exposed 
to direct musketry fire, for reasons none but General Ripley 
could explain, and the officers of the command are not known to 
have said that any explanation was vouchsafed. Marching 
thence, after two or three days' delay, the brigade found itself in 
front of one of the bridges over the Chickahominy which had 
been destroyed by the enemy on the south side, he having crossed 
the day before on the famous "grape-vine" bridge, some distance 
above. Here, being exposed to the enemy's fire of artillery 
without the means of replying, Ripley was withdrawn into a 
heavy woods on the northwest side of the road, lying there all 
day under the artillery fire, at times very annoying, but with 
little loss. This was the day of the battle of Frazer's Farm, a 
few miles lower down the stream. 

Next day, the enemy having withdrawn and the bridge re- 

Third Regiment. 219 

paired, Ripley crossed and marched on Malvern Hill, arriving 
there at noon, and was posted immediately in the rear of what 
was known as the Parsonage, on the near side of the road lead- 
ing by Malvern Hill, and on the left of the army. Being or- 
dered to advance, the whole line moved forward, and from the 
peculiar conformation of the land in front, the hill up which 
Ripley moved being almost an isolated knoll, upon reaching the 
top each regiment was found to be represented in the mass of 
disorganized troops occupying the yard of the Parsonage and the 
road in front. The officers of the several commands seemed not 
to have noted the conformation of the ground, and as each com- 
pany reached the foot of the hill it would change direction to 
go up the shortest road, thereby bringing about the trouble as 
seen at that point. Meantime a terrific fire of artillery and 
infantry swept the field, and the men involuntarily hugged the 
ground. Here they lay for some time, men falling every minute, 
and some leaving the field in search of surgical assistance- 
There was no possibility of doing anything, so far as could be 
seen by the field officers, and Ripley had not been seen about the 
lines after the first order was given to advance. About an hour 
before dusk word came from the left that Captain Brown, com- 
manding the First North Carolina, was hard pressed, and wanted 
assistance, when Colonel Meares determined to re-inforce him, 
and gave the command to move by the left flank. He, going on 
foot into the road in front of the line, upon reaching a point 
about opposite the left of the Third, stopped, and mounting the 
bank on the side of the road, was using his field-glass, surveying 
the Yankee lines, when he was instantly killed by a slug from a 
shrapnel fired from a battery directly in front, said to be the 
Third Rhode Island Battery, not over seventy-five yards distant. 

Colonel Meares was a man of marked individuality. Re- 
spected by his superior officers, beloved by his subordinate offi- 
cers, and even by the most humble private, his untimely death 
was deeply deplored by ail alike. It is certain that he would 
have been recommended for promotion. 

The Third held its position until withdrawn sometime during 

220 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

the night, aud bivouacked near that point for several days, when 
the brigade was ordered back to the old camping-grounds nearer 

Colonel DeRosset having been promoted to the command of 
the Third, decided to visit Raleigh for the purpose of recruiting 
the regiment. 

The losses in officers of the Third were numerous, but several 
were temporarily disabled by wounds. Some vacancies occurred 
about this time, and the conspicuous gallantry of Cicero H. 
Craig caused his recommendation for promotion, and he was at 
once put on duty, by brigade orders, as Lieutenant of Company I. 

Just here it is well to put on record an instance showing how 
the officers of the Third held to the original understanding with 
the Governor that all promotions and appointments should be made 
by or upon the recommendation of the commanding officer of 
the regiment. Upon the report made to Governor Clark in 
person by Colonel DeRosset, the Governor promised to have 
the commission for Lieutenant Craig mailed to him without delay, 
but upon being approached by two officers of Company I, who 
represented to the Governor that if Craig was made lieutenant 
of the company the men would resist and disband, he revoked 
his order for the commission, and ordered an election to be held 
in the company to fill the vacancy. Upon receipt of the com- 
munication from the Adjutant-General, Colonel DeRosset ad- 
dressed the Governor, declining to hold an election in his regi- 
ment, and should he insist upon it, that he could consider his 
resignation as being before him. Further explanation was made 
that the parties who informed the Governor of the condition of 
affairs in Company I had not participated in the late fights, and 
were hardly in position to form an intelligent opinion of the 
facts, and that the discipline of the men in his regiment was his 
responsibility as much as that of the company officers, and he 
would be responsible for results. As a finale, both officers 
referred to very soon ceased to hold their positions, and, for some 
forgotten reasons, were allowed to go home. The Governor ex- 

Thikd Regiment. 221 

pressed himself as fully satisfied, and immediately sent on Craig's 

Apropos, as to elections to fill vacancies, wliile near Goldsboro, 
in the spring of 1862, a vacancy occurred in the office of Second 
Lieutenant of Company G. Orders came from headquarters one 
afternoon to hold an election to fill the vacancy. Colonel Meares, 
after reading the order, passed it to Lieutenant-Colonel DeRosset, 
with the instruction that he should see that the order was carried 
out. Not seeing his way clear, but knowing the feelings of 
Colonel Meares as to permitting elections, DeRosset walked off 
in the direction of the camp of that company, hoping for some 
solution of the problem. Fortunately he found Lieutenant 
Quince of that company in charge, the captain being absent 
from camp. Quince had been educated as a soldier in the ranks 
of the Wilmington Light Infantry, and DeRosset knew he 
could be depended upon. At once handing the order to Quince, 
he. Quince, threw up his hands with horror at being called upon to 
be the instrument in carrying out such an order. DeRosset replied 
that the opinions of all the regimental, field and staff, as well as 
most of the line officers, were well known to be against such a 
system, but the order was imperative, and must be obeyed. Re- 
maining in hearing, and feeling that fun was ahead, DeRosset, 
standing behind the captain's tent, heard the following, almost 
literally related: 

Lieutenant Quince — "Sergeant, make the men fall in 
with arms." This was done quickly, and, addressing the men, 
he read the order, and remarked : " Men, there are two candi- 
dates for the office," naming them, "and there is but one of 
them worth a d — n, and I nominate him. All who are in favor 

of electing Sergeant , come to a shoulder. Company^ 

shoulder arms ! " Then, turning to the Orderly Sergeant, re- 
marked: "Sergeant, take charge of the company and dismiss 

Inside of fifteen minutes from the time the order was handed the 
Colonel, Lieutenant Quince handed in his report: "That an election 
had been held in accordance with Special Order No. — , and that 

222 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Sergeant had been unanimously elected." This put a stop 

to all talk about elections for some time, and, after Craig's pro- 
motion, the subject was never again mentioned. 

Ripley lay in camp for several weeks, while details were made 
to work on the intrenchments in our front and for several miles 
down towards the Chickahominy, while other details gathered 
arms from the several battlefields. 

Up to this time the Third was armed principally with smooth- 
bore muskets, but with the ample supply of the Springfield 
rifled muskets gathered from the field and captured, there was 
enough to supply our whole army with the improved gun. 
Orders came from headquarters that all muskets should be turned 
in and the troops armed with the rifles. Colonel DeRosset 
believed firmly in the great efficiency of the smooth-bore with 
buck and ball cartridges, and, after a consultation with General 
Ripley, secured a modification of the order as applying to the 
Third North Carolina, and was allowed to retain muskets for 
eight companies, arming the two flank companies with the rifles. 
He always insisted that it was owing to the good use of the buck 
and ball at close range at Sharpsburg that the Third were enabled 
to do so much damage, and to hold their position after advancing 
for so long a time. 

In the latter part of July, Colonel DeRosset returned from 
Raleigh and brought with him four hundred conscripts, who 
were at once divided into small squads, and, under command of 
non-commissioned officers, were drilled several hours daily. This 
not only helped to discipline the raw levies, but hardened them 
somewhat, thus enabling them the better to stand the strains inci- 
dent to the march into Maryland, which soon followed. 

During this period, awaiting marching orders, the first execu- 
tion under sentence of a military court took place in the brigade 
on the person of an Irishman who had deserted and was captured 
in his effiDrts to reach the enemy's lines. He belonged to Cap- 
tain Dudley's company, of the First North Carolina, and the 
■firing party was from his own company, who did their sad duty 
like true soldiers. 

Third Regiment. 223 

About the time that Jackson was lookiug for Pope's " head- 
quarters," from Culpepper to Manassas, Ripley received march- 
ing orders, and the brigade went by rail to Orange Court House. 
Here the brigade bivouacked for several days, ofiBcers and men 
wondering why we were held back, when it was evident that 
hard work was going on at the front. However, marching 
orders came at last, and after much time given to preparation, 
we finally took the road for Culpepper Court House, thence in a 
northerly direction to the Alexandria and Luray pike, striking 
that road about sundown at a point called Amisville. To the 
amazement of the field and line officers, instead of marching 
toward Warrenton, where it was generally understood Lee had 
passed, the head of the column was changed to the left. One of 
the officers here rode up to the head of the column, and accosting 
General Ripley, asked if he had any objection to saying where 
we were marching to. His reply was: "I am going to see my 
sweetheart at Luray." He thereupon ordered a halt, and to go 
into bivouac at once and prepare rations as issued, having just 
received by courier orders from General Lee to march at once, 
and quickly, to Manassas Junction. Next morning, after a 
deliberate breakfast, the column counter-marched and reached 
Warrenton about 2 or 3 o'clock P. M. The General repaired to 
a private house for refreshments, directing the command to pro- 
ceed to a point a mile or two out on the Manassas road and 
bivouac, with special instructions to the officers left in command 
to have the column drawn up in line on the road ready to march 
at 4 o'clock A. M. next day, but not to move until he came up. 
The command was on time, and stood in a drenching rain until 
about 7 o'clock, when Ripley appeared, and the column moved 
on. Arriving at the Junction about 3 or 4 o'clock p. M., in full 
hearing of the desperate conflict going on a short distance ahead 
of us, we were deliberately filed off the road in an opposite 
direction and halted, bivouacked there that night and next 
morning crossed Bull Run at Sudley's Ford, having passed over 
perhaps the bloodiest portion of the field, where the dead and 
many wounded still lay in the sun. Marching through a country 

224 jSTorth Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

entirely destitute of water for several miles, we finally reached 
the Alexandria and Leesburg pike, where a halt was made to 
allow the men to drink and fill their canteens. Moving on in 
the direction of Alexandria, which point was understood to be 
Lee's objective point, we came up while the battle of Ox Hill 
was being fought, and were held in reserve until its close, falling 
back next morning to a beautiful country-seat known as Chan- 
tilly, where we bivouacked for several days. 

The march into Maryland then commenced, and we moved 
towards Leesburg, where we received rations again and prepared 
them for another march ; bivouacked there for twenty-four 
hours, and then taking a road direct to the Potomac, crossed at 
Point of Rocks ; thence moving down the bank of the river along 
the canal to Point of Rocks, where, taking our last view of old 
Virginia, we took the road for Frederick City direct, halting 
there for two or more days. 

The army moved westwardly along the Great Western turn- 
pike, crossing the mountains, and bivouacked that night a little 
beyond Boonsboro. On the evening of Saturday, September 13, 
1862, the brigade was counter-marched toward the mountain and 
placed in line of battle on the north side of the pike, near the 
fobt of the mountain, again in reserve. Next morning, Sunday, 
Colonel Doles, with the Fourth Georgia, was detached and or- 
dered to take position in a gap on the north side of the pike, and 
the other three regiments were moved up the mountain, and just 
to the east of the tavern on the summit filed to the right, and 
moved along the summit road, having, before leaving the pike, 
passed the body of General Garland, who had just been slain at 
the head of his command. Leaving this road, they moved by 
one leading diagonally down the mountain, and, on reaching the 
foot, were halted some half mile to a mile from the pike, on the 
south. Here General Ripley concluded that his command and 
that of General George B. Anderson were cut off from the troops 
on his left, and assuming command of the division, notified Colo- 
nel DeRosset to take command of the brigade. General Ander- 
son seemed to have moved up the mountain very promptly, and 

Third Eegiment. 225 

Ripley ordered Colonel DeRosset to do likewise. Lieutenant- 
Colonel Thruston was ordered to take a company of skirmishers, 
covering the front of the brigade, and soon reported that troops 
were in his front, and later that General G. B. Anderson was 
moving across his front. General Ripley, remaining at the foot 
of the mountain, was informed of the situation, and at once 
ordered his brigade to fall back. It was then moved by the left 
flank up a road leading diagonally up the mountain and halted, 
occupying that position until quietly withdrawn sometime 
between 9 o'clock p. m. and midnight. 

General Ripley again assumed command of his own brigade 
and marched by a road leading towards the Boonsboro and Sharps- 
burg pike. On reaching a point on the crest of the hill, just 
after crossing the Antietam on the stone bridge, the command 
was placed in line of battle under the hill, the right of the Third 
North Carolina, in absence of the Fourth Georgia, on the right 
of the brigade and resting on the Boonsboro pike. This was on 
the evening of the 15th, and the brigade remained in that posi- 
tion until the evening of the 16th, under a heavy artillery fire 
from the enemy's guns on the east side of the creek, but without 
loss, being well protected by the crest of the hill under which 
he lay. 

Meantime the battle had opened on our left, and as that seemed 
to be the point at which McClellan would make his greatest 
effort. General Ripley was ordered in that direction and biv- 
ouacked to the east of the Hagerstown pike, directly opposite the 
Dunkard Church and south of the Mumma farm house, which 
latter was destroyed by fire early next morning. 

About daylight on thfe 17th the Federal artillery opened, and 
one of the first guns, from a point near which McClellan made 
his headquarters, fired a shell which fell just in front of the 
brigade, wounding some sixteen officers and men of the Third. 
The advance was soon ordered, and the enemy was first encount- 
ered in an open field a little to the south of the famous corn field 
near the East Woods, and the smooth-bore muskets with the buck 
and ball cartridges did most excellent service, being at very close 


226 NoETH Caeolina Teoops, 1861-'65. 

quarters, not over one hundred yards from the first line of the 
three lines of the enemy. 

There being quite a gap in our lines on Ripley's right, a 
change of front was made to meet a flank attack by the One 
Hundred and Twenty-eighth Pennsylvania, a new and large 
regiment, and the Third North Carolina, being still on the right, 
met with heavy losses from this attack before the movement could 
be made with assured safety. General Ripley had been slightly 
wounded in the throat early in the action and the brigade was 
now under the command of Colonel George Doles, of the Fourth 
Georgia, the ranking officer. 

About the time that the movement in changing from front to 
rear began, Colonel DeRosset was severely wounded, and per- 
manently disabled. Lieutenant-Colonel Thruston at once took 
command, and charged the enemy, maintaining his advanced 
position until forced back by mere weight of numbers. From 
this time the Third North Carolina was under the command of 
Colonel Thruston, who succeeded to the full command upon the 
resignation of Colonel DeRosset, some months later, when it was 
definitely determined that the wound of the latter had disabled 
him permanently for active service. There were few, if any, 
regimental commanders in the Army of Northern Virginia who 
were the superior of Colonel Thruston, if his equal, in all that 
goes to make up an intelligent, able and successful leader. He 
was painfully wounded during this action, but refused to leave 
the field. 

Of the twenty-seven officers who went into action on that 
memorable morning all save three were disabled and seven killed. 
Captain McNair, Company H, was badly wounded in the leg 
early in the day, but refused to leave, althougb urged to do so 
by the Colonel, and soon after gave up his life-blood on his coun- 
try's altar. 

The official report of the division commander gives the loss 
in the Third North Carolina, but it is less than was reported at 
the close of the day by Lieutenant J. F. S. Van Bokkelen, Acting 

Thied Regiment. 227 

Adjutant, who stated that of the five hundred and twenty carried 
into action only one hundred and ninety could be accounted for. 

Of the conscripts who were enlisted in the Third North Caro- 
lina about one hundred succeeded in keeping up with their 
comrades and taking part in the Sharpsburg battle. During 
this engagement, while the whole line was busily engaged in their 
deadly work, one of the conscripts was observed calmly walking 
up and down behind his company, and upon being asked why 
he was not in ranks and firing, replied : " I have seen nothing 
to shoot at, and I have only sixty rounds of cartridges; I don't 
care to waste them." He was instructed to lie down, and being 
shown the blue breeches under the smoke, his face bright- 
ened up at once as he began firing. Seldom was truer cour- 
age displayed than by this man, who, under his first experience in 
battle, having evidently been left behind as his company double- 
quicked to the front, came up after the smoke from the first volleys 
had obscured everything, and could see nothing in front. It 
would indeed be interesting to know this man's name and fate^ 
but such cannot be, for he probably sleeps in a soldier's grave 
in the famous corn field, unhonored and unsung, where so many 
comrades lie buried. 

Of the original captains of the Third North Carolina: 

Captain Drysdale died in winter quarters at Acquia Creek 
during the winter of 1861-'62,'and was buried in Goldsboro. He 
died of pneumonia contracted in the performance of his duties. 

Captain Thruston held each office in succession until he reached 
the colonelcy. He lives in Dallas, Texas, and is an honored 
member of the medical profession. 

Captain Mallett, having been appointed conscript officer of the 
State, with the rank of Major and subsequently Colonel, resigned 
his captaincy. He now lives in New' York. 

Captain Savage, afterwards Lieutenant-Colonel, resigned after 
the battles around Richmond. He now resides in New York. 

Captain Redd resigned his commission in the early part of 
1862. He is now a farmer in Onslow county. 

Captain Parsley, rising to the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel of 

228 North Caeolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

his regiment, was killed only three days before the surrender at 
Appomattox, respected and beloved by all. 

Captain Rhodes was wounded at Sharpsburg, and as he has 
never since been heard of, it is supposed he died of his wounds. 

Captain Sikes, having absented himself from his command 
during the seven days' fight, and gone to his home without proper 
leave of absence, was allowed to resign. 

Captain Carmer resigned his commission soon after the battles 
around Richmond. 

Captain Williams, known by his men as "Pap," as brave a 
man as ever lived, was disemboweled by a rifle shot from the 
enemy's batteries at Sharpsburg, and sleeps in a soldier's grave, 
with his blanket for a shroud, in the front yard of the house in 
rear of the village, which was used as a field hospital near the 
Shepherdstown pike. 

W. L. DeRosset. 

Wilmington, jST. C, 

9th April, 1900. 


1. Eryan Grimes, Colonel. a. E. A. Osborne, Colonel. 

2. George B. Anderson, Colonel. C. J. E. Stansill, Major. 

3. James H. Wood, Colonel. 7. J. P. Shaffner, Chief Surgeon. 

4. John A. Young, Lieut. -Colonel. 8. Rev. W. A. Wood, Chaplain. 

9. J. M. Iladley, Assistant Surgeon. 


By colonel E. A. OSBORNE. 

To write a full and accurate history of this noble body of n 
would require far more time, ability and space than the pres 
writer can command. But as the honor and distinction of wi 
ing a brief sketch has fallen to my lot, I cheerfully and gr£ 
fully address myself to the task, feeling at the same time dee] 
conscious of my unworthiness and inability to handle suet 
theme. I cannot conceive of a braver, truer, nobler, more 
voted and self-denying body of men than was this splendid re 
ment of North Carolinians. In every position, under the m 
trying circumstances in which men can be placed, from the ca 
of instruction to the close of a four years' war — a war that 
volved more hardships, more persevering courage and fortitu 
more self-denial, more devotion, more true manhood and end 
ance, more love of home, of country and of principle, and m 
true heroism on the part of the men of the South than has b 
manifested at least in modern times, these devoted men, e 
forgetful of self, and following firmly and steadily in the lead 
patriotic duty, without pay, and suffering for the bare neces 
ries of life most of the time, never flinched nor murmured; 1 
endured with sublime patience and fortitude the hardships 
the camp, of the march, of the bivouac, and the many terri 
scenes of strife, and blood, and carnage, through which tl 
passed during these four long and terrible years of suffering a 


In writing this sketch I must be content to give a mere outl 
of actual occurrences. The facts simply stated speak for the 
selves. They need no embellishment to commend their act 
to the admiration of all who value and love what is brave i 

230 NoETH Carolina Tboops, 1861-'65. 

true aud manly. The UDvaruished story o^ these brave and de- 
voted mea who gave themselves for the cause they loved fur- 
nishes such examples of heroic valor, unselfish devotion and 
unwavering faithfulness as will be an inspiration and an honor 
to their countrymen in all future ages. 

The Fourth Regiment of North Carolina State Troops was 
organized at Camp Hill, near Garysburg, N. C, in May, 1861. 
The field officers at first were: 

George Buegwyn Anderson, Colonel. 

John Augustus Young, Lieutenant-Colonel. 

Bryan Grimes, Major. 

Dr. J. K. King, Surgeon. 

Dr. B. S. Thomas, Assistant Surgeon. 

Captain John D. Hyman, Commissary. 

Captain Thomas H. Blount, Quartermaster. 

Thomas L. Perry, Adjutant. 

Rev. William A. Wood, Chaplain. 

R. F. SiMONTON, Commissary Sergeant. 

F. A. Carlton, Sergeant- Major. 

Elam Morrison, Quartermaster's Sergeant. 

Fourth Kbgiment. 231 


Company A — Iredell County — Captain, A. K. Simonton; 
First Lieutenant, W. L. Davidson; Second Lieutenant, W. G. 
Falls; Second Lieutenant, William F. McRorie. 

Company B — Rowan County — Captain, James H. Wood; 
First Lieutenant, A. C. Watson; Second Lieutenant, J. F. 
Stancill; Second Lieutenant, J. fl. Harris. 

Company C — Iredell County — Captain, John B. Andrews; 
First Lieutenant, James Rufus lieid; Second Lieutenant, W. A. 
Kerr; Second Lieutenant, Joseph C. White. 

Company D — Wayne County — Captain, J. B. Whittaker; 
First Lieutenant, Alexander D. Tumbro; Second Lieutenant, 
J. J. Bradley; Second Lieutenant, R. B. Potts. 

Company E — Beaufort County— Cn-piaan, David M. Carter; 
First Lieutenant, Thomas L. Perry; Second Lieutenant, E. J. 
Redding; Second Lieutenant, Daniel P. Latham. 

Company F — Wilson County — Captain, Jesse S. Barnes; 
First Lieutenant, J. W. Dunham; Second Lieutenant, P. N. 
Simms; Second Lieutenant, Thomas E. Thompson. 

Company G — Davie County — Captain, William G. Kelley; 
First Lieutenant, Samuel A. Kelley; Second Lieutenant, Thomas 
J. Brown; Second Lieutenant, Samuel A. Davis. 

Company H — Iredell County — Captain, Edwin Augustus 
Osborne; First Lieutenant, John Z. Daiton; Second Lieutenant, 
Hal. H. Weaver; Second Lieutenant, John B. Forcum. 

Company I — Beaufort County — Captain, W. T. Marsh; First 
Lieutenant, L. R. Creekman; Second Lieutenant, Noah B. 
Tuten; Second Lieutenant, Bryan S. Bonner. 

Company K — Rowan County — Captain, F. Y. McNeely; 
First Lieutenant, W. C. Coughenonr; Second Lieutenant, Mar- 
cus Hofflin; Second Lieutenant, W^illiam Brown. 

Promotions in Company A during the war — W. L. 
Davidson to Captain, W. G. Falls to Captain, W. F. McRorie 
to Captain, W. K. Eliason to First Lieutenant, F. A. Carlton 
to First Lieutenant, A. S. Fraley to Second Lieutenant, J. Pink 

232 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Cowan to Second Lieutenant, T. M. C. Davidson to Second 
Lieutenant, W. R. INlcNeely to Second Lieutenant. 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company A — E. F. Mor- 
rison, W. T. J. Harbin, W. L. Shuford, D. A. Doherty, E. C. 
Rumple, P. A. Siiafer, C. D. Murdock, J. A. Stikeleather. 

Promotions in Company B during the avae — J. F. 
Stancill to Captain, J. H. Hilliard to Captain, T. C. Watson to 
Captain, J. W. Shinn to First Lieutenant, Joseph Barber to 
Second Lieutenant, Isaac A. Cowan to Captain, James P. Burke 
to Second Lieutenant. 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company B — J. W. 
Phifer, E. F. Barber, B. Knox Kerr, Rufus Mills, M. S. Mc- 
Kenzie, John Hellers, H. C. Miller, "William A. Burkhead, D. 
W. Steele, B. A. Knox. 

Promotions in Company C during the war — Claudius 
S. Alexander to Captain, W. A. Kerr to Captain, G. A. Andrews 
to Captain, T. W. Stephenson to First Lieutenant, J. C. White 
to First Lieutenant, J. A. S. Feimster to Second Lieutenant, S. 
A. Claywell to Second Lieutenant, John C. Turner. 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company C — James A. 
Sommers, J. J. Troutman, S. J. Thomas, A. J. Anderson, J. C. 
Norton, D. P. Dobbin, Edward May, John C. Turner, A. M. 
White, J. A. Feimster, F. A. Shuford, R. O. Sinster. 

Promotions in Company D during the war — Alexander 
Tumbro to Captain, M. C. Hazelle to Captain, T. G. Lee to 
Captain, Lovett Lewis to Captain, R. B. Potts to First Lieuten- 
ant, J. B. Griswold to Second Lieutenant, Cader Parker to Second 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company D— Robert A. 
Best, James C. Cotton, M. C. Hazelle, John Holmes, James 
Brewer, George Casey, J. J. Ellis, R. W. Hodgins, Robert Peel, 
J. H. Pearsall, J. R. Williams, J. W. Harrison, D. L. Howell, 
J. R. Tumbro. 

Promotions in Company E during the war — D. G. 
Latham to Captain, T. M. Allen to Captain, J. H. Carter to 
Captain, C. K. Gallagher to Captain, E. L. Redding to Second 

Fourth Regiment. 233 

Lieutenaat, S. J. Litchfield to First Lieutenant, M. T. William- 
son to Second Lieutenant. 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company E — J. F. 
Lucas, Joseph Cutler, Joseph Whegget, George Litchfield, S. B. 
Whitley, T. R. Petterton, C. E. Perry. 

Promotions in Company F during the war — John W. 
Dunham to Captain, H. M. Warren to Captain, T. G. Lee to 
First Lieutenant, T. F. Thompson to Second Lieutenant, S. Y. 
Parker to Second Lieutenant, W. V. Stevens to Second Lieuten- 
ant, T. B. Stith to Second Lieutenant, J. D. Wells to Second 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company F — W. R. 
Hamraell, R. B. Lancaster, W. P. Fitzgerald, J. B. Farmer, J. 
H. Marshburn, R. H. Watson, W. E. Winstead, W. O. Wootten, 
J. L. Burton, J. B. Farmer. 

Promotions in Company G during the war — S. A 
Kelley to Captain, B. J. Smith to First Lieutenant, D. J. Cain to 
First Lieutenant, D. G. Snioot to Second Lieutenant, C. A. 
Guffy to Second Lieutenant, W. B. Jones to Second Lieutenant. 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company G — R. D. 
Brown, B. B. Williams, P. P. Haynes, L. S. Millican, C. A. 

Promotions, in Company H during the war — John B. 
Forcum to Captain, A. M. D. Kennedy to First Lieutenant, Julius 
A. Summers to First Lieutenant, J. B. Stockton to Second Lieu- 

Non-commissioned Officers in Company H — J. M. 
Albea, H. H. James, S. H. Bobbit, I. P. Maiden, H. P. Wil- 
liams, T. M. Ball, J. A. Holmes, John A. Feimster, Stark Gra- 
ham, A. L. Summers, John Barnett. 

Promotions in Company I during the war — Edward 
S. Marsh to Captain, B. T. Bonner to First Lieutenant, N. B. 
Tuten to Second Lieutenant, T>. C. Styron to Second Lieutenant, 
C A. Watson to Second Lieutenant, Edward Tripp to Second 
Lieutenant, James A. Herrington to Second Lieutenant. 

Non-commissioned Officersof Company I — C. C. Archi- 

234 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

bald, Charles Tripp, Zack B. Caraway, B. B. Ross, R. R. Tuten,- 
Henry L. Clayton, Charles Tripp. 

Promotions In Company K during the war — W. C. 
Coughenour to Captain, Marcus Hofflin to Captain, Moses L. 
Bean to Captain, William Brown to Second Lieutenant, Hamil- 
ton Long to Second Lieutenant, A. N. Wiseman to Second Lieu- 

Non-commissioned Officers of Company K — W. C. Fra- 
ley, James Bowers, John E. Renter, John L. Lyerly, James 

Number of Privates in the Fourth Regiment — Com- 
pany A, 153; Company B, 109; Company C, 170; Company D, 
98; Company E, 172; Company F, 109; Company G, 108; Com- 
pany H, 246; Company I, 82; Company K, 129. Total, 1,376. 

The following persons composed the regimental band, which 
was a most efficient body of men, always at the post of duty, 
and during 1864-'65 acting as litter-bearers and hospital nurses 
in time of engagements: E. B. Neave, Chief Musician; W. R. 
Gorman, John Y. Barber, Thomas Gillespie, John T. Good- 
man, W. A. Moose, J. C. Steel, Nat. Raymer, Charles Heyer, 

M. J. Weant, Green Austin, Brawley, E. B. Stinson, 


The regiment was ordered to leave camp Hill, near Garys- 
burg, N. C, and proceed to Richmond Va., on the 20th of July, 
1861, where we remained until the 29th of July, when we were 
sent to Manassas Junction, Va., arriving there some days after 
the bloody engagement which was the first great battle of the war. 
Here we remained doing post and fatigue duty and drilling dur- 
ing the summer and winter. Colonel Anderson having been as- 
signed to the command of the post. 

While at Manassas the men suffered fearfully with sickness, 
and many valuable young men succumbed to the various forms 
of disease that assailed us there. There were many other troops 
there, and almost every hour in the day the funeral dirge could 
be heard and the firing of the doleful platoon sounded out upon 
the air almost continually, reminding us that death was busy in 

FouETH Eegiment. 235 

*the camp; and almost every train that left the station carried the 
remains of some soldier boy back to his friends at home. But 
when the winter came the men regained their health, and having 
become inured to camp life, and accustomed to taking care of 
themselves, they were soon in fine spirits. In fact, when we left 
Manassas Junction on the 8th of March, 1862, they had the 
appearance and bearing of regular troops, and were in a measure 
prepared for the terrible ordeals through which they were des- 
tined to pass in the course of the next few months. The brigade 
was now composed of the Forty-ninth Virginia, the Twenty- 
seventh and Twenty-eighth Georgia, and the Fourth North 
Carolina Regiments, and was under the command of Colonel 
Anderson, and the regiment in command of Major Grimes, Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Young having been sent to Richmond to attend 
to business connected with the command. After a march of 
several days, we went into camp at Clark's Mountain, near 
Orange Court House and about three miles from the Rapidan 
River. Here we remained until the 8th of April, when we were 
ordered to Yorktown. At this place we had our first experience 
in contact with the enemy — doing picket duty and having some 
skirmishes with his pickets. We also were subjected to the 
fire of their gun-boats on the river. 


On the night of the 4th of May, 1862, Yorktown was evacu- 
ated. Major Grimes was now in charge of the picket-line, Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Young in command of the regiment, and Colonel 
Anderson still in command of the brigade. Major Grimes held 
the picket-line until the troops had gotten under way, and then, 
about daylight, he withdrew and joined the regiment about noon. 
The next day the enemy attacked the Confederate forces at 
Williamsburg. Our brigade had passed through the town, but 
upon hearing the firing in the rear, we quickly faced about and 
marched in the direction of the engagement. The rain was pour- 
ing and the streets of the town covered with mud. The doors, 
yards and balconies were crowded with women and children 

236 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

wild with excitement, waving handkerchiefs and banners, and* 

urging us on to the conflict. We passed a number of wounded 
men, some streaming with blood and pale with exhaustion, be- 
ing borne upon litters or supported by comrades. The excite- 
ment and enthusiasm of the mem became intense. The air rang 
with shouts as we pressed forward, eager for the fray. We 
marched directly to the field of battle and -were formed in line. 
The air was alive with the roar of artillery and musketry and 
the shouts and shrieks of men, some in tones of triumph and 
others in cries of pain. The balls flew thick around us, and a 
few of our men were wounded; but we were not actively en- 
gaged. The day was far spent, and the mists of night soon 
gathered over the field and put an end to the strife. We passed 
the night on the field, wet and faint with hunger and fatigue. 
The night was cold; no fires were allowed, and the men suffered 
greatly. Some would have died if they had not kept in motion 
by stamping, marking time, or crowding together in groups to 
keep each other warm. 

This was the 5th of May; a day long to be remembered as the 
first actual experience we had on the field of battle, and wit- 
nessed the dire results of war. All night long we could hear 
the cries and groans of some wounded men in our front, and an 
occasional shot from the picket-line told of the presence of the 
foe, which would not permit them to be taken care of. 

The next day we resumed the line of march towards Rich- 
mond. The roads were muddy from the rains and stirred up 
by the artillery and baggage trains. The men literally waded 
almost knee-deep in mud most of the day. Their rations were 
exhausted, and that night each man received an ear of hard corn 
for his supper; but not a murmur did I hear. The boys parched 
their corn and ate it with the best grace they could command, 
and were glad to rest quietly for the night. The next day we 
were supplied with rations. 

On the 13th of May we came to the Chickahominy E.iver, 
where we remained until the battle of Seven Pines, or Fair 

Fourth Eegiment. 237 


The day before this bloody engagement was hot and sultry. 
The regiment was kept under arms all day, and frequently changed 
its position as if expecting an engagement. About sunset we 
went into bivouac and were ordered to prepare rations for the 
next day. The men were stirring until late at night, and then, 
tired and jaded, they sought repose. But soon a most terrible 
thunder-storm came down upon us. -It seemed as if heaven and 
earth were being torn to pieces, while the rain came down in 
torrents upon the men, who were poorly sheltered, some with 
little fly tents and many with only a single blanket on a pole 
instead of a tent. But towards morning the storm passed away, 
leaving the air cool and bracing; and the men slept. The 31st 
was a lovely May morning, and the sun rose bright and clear. 
The men were full of life and the woods resounded with their 
voices and movements. Breakfast was soon dispatched and the 
order 16 "fall in" was given. 

The regiment was in fine condition. Twenty-five commissioned 
officers and five hundred and twenty men and non-commissioned 
officers reported for duty on the morning of the 31st of May, 
1862; and as they filed out and moved off toward the battlefield 
of Seven Pines they presented a splendid picture of manhood, 
energy and courage. The brigade was still under command of 
Colonel Anderson, the regiment under Major Grimes, Lieutenant- 
Colonel J. A. Young having been sent home on special duty. 
Early in the afternoon we were drawn up in front of the enemy's 
works near the Williamsburg road, under cover of a heavy forest, 
within one-fourth of a mile of the enemy's batteries and redoubts. 
A formidable abatis, formed by felling a dense grove of old field 
pines and cutting the limbs partly off so as to form obstructions 
to our approach, lay between us and the enemy's works. The 
ground was also covered with water in many places — from six 
inches to waist-deep. The Fourth Regiment was to the left of 
the stage road, the right being near the road, which ran diagonally 
across our front, crossing the enemy's line a little to the left of 
the front of the Fourth Regiment. A very heavy redoubt was 

238 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

in front of us, bristling with artillery supported by a mass of 
infantry and flanked on either side by extensive earth-works 
filled with men supported by artillery. We had not been in 
this position but a few minutes when the enemy opened on us 
with his artillery. A fearful storm of shot, shell, grape and 
canister tore through the trees, plowing up the ground on every 
side and cutting down the branches and saplings around us. 
Soon the order was passed along the line to move forward. The 
men sprang to their feet without a word and advanced to the 
assault. For many rods we made our way through the obstruc- 
tions above mentioned, under a terrible fire of musketry and 
artillery, which we could not return with any effect on account 
of the confusion into which we were thrown by the obstructions 
and the great difiieulty of getting over them. Heavy musketry 
on the right indicated that the battle was raging there with ter- 
rible fury. Onward moved our devoted men, until at last the 
open field was reached within one hundred yards of the enemy's 
works. The men quickly resumed their places in line of battle 
and opened fire upon the enemy with such deadly eScct as to 
cause a momentary lull in the storm of deadly missiles that were 
assailing us. But again the enemy renewed his fire with redoubled 
fury. Our line moved on to within fifty or sixty yards of the 
enemy's works. The men were falling rapidly. We halted near 
a zigzag fence to await support on the right, which had failed to 
come up. The enemy's fire continued with unabated fury, and 
it was evident that the regiment could not remain there without 
being utterly destroyed. The writer of this narrative looked 
around for a field officer. Major Grimes was near, sitting calmly 
on his iron-gray horse, with one leg thrown over the saddle bow, 
as afterwards so often seen on the battlefield. I seized his leg to 
attract his attention. He leaned toward me with his ear near my 
face to hear what I had to say. " Major," I shouted, " we can't 
stand this. Let us charge the works." "All right," said the 
Major, "Charge them! 'Charge them!" I rushed back to the 
front of my company, leaped over the fence, and waved them 
forward with hat and sword. My company, H, rushed forward, 

Fourth Regiment. 239 

and the whole regiment instinctively moved with them, yelling 
and firing as they advanced. In front of our left was a field 
battery which was instantly silenced, also the heavy battery in 
front of our centre and right. On we rushed with such impetuos- 
ity and determination that the enemy abandoned everything and 
retired. We captured the works and six pieces of artillery. 
But again we had to halt to await necessary support on the right 
and left. The writer of this sketch was wounded at this point 
within a few rods of the breastworks. After the works were 
captured in the first assault the line retired to the fence from 
which we had made the charge, to await re-inforcements, which 
arrived in a few minutes, when the whole line advanced and 
drove the enemy entirely away. 

When the second charge was ordered the regiment passed over 
the same ground over which they had charged but a little while 
before. It was appalling to see how much the line had been 
reduced in numbers. The heavy, compact, orderly line of half 
an hour previous was now scarcely more than a line of skirmish- 
ers, but they moved with the same boldness and determination 
as before. The ground was literally covered with the bodies of 
their dead and wounded comrades, yet they moved steadily for- 
ward, directing their fire with telling efiPect until within a few 
paces of the fortifications, when the enemy again retired from his 

Of the twenty-five commissioned officers and six hundred, and 
fifty-three men and non-commissioned officers every officer except 
Major Grimes was killed, wounded or disabled, while of the men 
seventy-four were killed and two hundred and sixty-five were 
wounded. Major Grimes had a horse killed under him in the 
charge. His foot was caught under the horse, and it was with much 
difficulty that he was extricated from his helpless condition. While 
on the ground and unable to rise, he waved his sword and shouted : 
"Go on, boys ! Go on !" Upon regaining his feet he saw that 
his color-bearer, James Bonner, of Company K, was killed, when 
he seized the flag himself and rushed forward, waving his men 
on to the charge. After the works were captured John A. Stike- 

240 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65 

leather, of CompaDy A, asked to be allowed to carry the flag; 
and from that day to the close of the war, except when necessarily 
absent for a short time, he bravely bore the regimental colors. 

A few minutes after the -enemy was driven from his works 
he began to rally in rear of his tents. Major Grimes order- 
ed his regiment into a piece of woodland near by, and opened 
fire upon him. In moving at double-quick across the open field, 
to seek the cover of the woods, he discovered that the enemy 
was throwing up breastworks on his right. He charged, driv- 
ing him away and taking a number of prisoners. The night 
was spent upon the field. The men being worn out, were glad 
to stretch themselves upon the ground and rest, surrounded, as 
they were, by dead and wounded men and animals, while the air 
was filled with cries and groans of the wounded and dying. 

The conduct of the officers and men in this notable conflict 
was splendid beyond description. Their coolness and delibera- 
tion in making their way through the abatis, under the most 
galling fire at short range; the firmness and calmness with which 
they reformed their weakened and disordered line and awaited 
orders in the open field within seventy-five yards of the enemy's 
works, under the same awful and destructive fire; the coolness 
and precision with which they delivered their fire under all these 
trying conditions; the irresistible firmness and determination 
with which they made that wonderful and heroic charge in the 
very jaws of death; the calmness and sullenness with which they 
retired when the danger of being flanked was apparent, and the 
grim and unwavering determination with which they returned 
to the second charge and continued to fight, all displayed a 
spirit of courage and manliness worthy of any men the world 
has ever produced. It would be a privilege to record the list of 
the gallant men who fell in this fight, but time and space for- 
bids. Their names may not be known to history or to fame, but 
their comrades knew them and loved them. We believe the 
world is better and humanity is honored and ennobled by the 
lives of such men, and that both are the poorer by their un- 
timely loss. 

Fourth Regiment. 241 

The figures in regard to the number of the men engaged and 
of those killed and disabled are taken from Colonel G. B. 
Anderson's ofificial report of the battle. In all this carnage 
these heroic men never for an instant wavered or showed 
the slightest trepidation. It was as if some superhuman spirit 
had been infused into them, and nothing but death itself 
could stop them. The writer shall never forget his feelings 
as he lay upon that bloody field wounded and helpless, and 
saw those brave men pressing on in the face of that death- 
dealing fire. On they went, their ranks growing thinner and 
thinner, until within a few paces of the enemy's works, be- 
hind which masses of bayonets were gleaming. Surely they will 
all be made prisoners. But no. The forest of gleaming steel 
begins to waver, and then to move away in confusion; and the 
works are ours! Three color-bearers were among the killed, 
and Major Grimes then took the flag and carried it through the 
remainder of the fight. 

It may be proper to say a word in regard to the absence of 
Lieutenant-Colonel John A. Young from the regiment at this 
battle and thereafter. He had been for some time before the 
war, and at its beginning, a manufacturer of woolen cloth; and 
had been sent home to procure clothing for the men of the regi- 
ment, which he abundantly supplied. Colonel Young was also 
afflicted with a distressing and incurable disease, which rendered 
him unfit for active military service. This was a great sorrow 
to him, as he was a devoted patriot and naturally of a military 
spirit. But being assured that he could serve his country more 
effectually at home than in the army, he at the earnest request of 
Governor Vance, as well as of friends in the army and at home, 
resigned his commission and devoted himself to manufacturing 
clothing for the soldiers. This he did at much pecuniary sacri- 
fice to himself, insomuch that the close of the war found him 
almost a bankrupt in estate. He devoted himself specially to 
supplying the wants of the Fourth Regiment, at one time sup- 
plying every member in the regiment with a uniform and cap at 
his own individual cost, and his enterprise, industry and munifi- 

242 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

ceuce contributed greatly to the comfort and welfare of North 
Carolina soldiers generally. 

After the battle of Seven Pines, until the 26th of June, we 
were mainly occupied in resting, drilling and recruiting the 


On the 26th of June we crossed the Chickahominy River and 
joined the troops about to engage in the battle of Mechanicsville. 
Soon the regiment was under heavy fire, which lasted for several 
hours, in that most trying of all positions, supporting other 
troops who were actively engaged in battle. There was a bat- 
tery in front of us doing great damage to our troops. General 
D. H. Hill ordered Major Grimes to charge this battery with 
his regiment, the Fourth. Major Grimes informed him that he 
had only a mere skeleton of a regiment, and that the attempt 
would be futile, as there were not more than one hundred and 
fifty men and officers for duty. The General then ordered him 
to hold himself in readiness to make the charge in case others 
who had been ordered forward should fail to take the battery. 
The charge was made by the other troops and the enemy driven 
away. We then resumed our position on the right of the brigade- 

cold harbor. 

For some time the enemy seemed to be retiring before us. 
After a great deal of marching and manoeuvering, we came within 
sight of the retreating foe. The men raised a shout and set 
out at double-quick in pursuit. Major Grimes took the flag and 
rode forward, leading the charge, the men following in good 
order. Suddenly a volley from the enemy's guns admonished us 
that there was serious work at hand. Hitherto we had been 
moving in column. Line of battle was quickly formed. The 
brigade recoiled for a moment, but soon recovered, and stood 
their ground like men. The firing of musketry in our front 
was very heavy and incessant. We were ordered to change our 
position to a piece of woodland on the left, where we remained 

Fourth Regiment. 243 

for some time, while the battle raged with fury in our front and 
on our right. We were then ordered forward in line of battle 
across an open field, after crossing which we passed through a 
piece of woods, when suddenly we encountered a line of battle 
concealed in the underwood in front of us. They opened fire 
on us. Our line halted and poured a volley into their ranks. 
Volley after volley followed as our men steadily advanced. Soon 
the enemy gave way. We now had a little time to rest and reform 
our line. Soon we heard heavy firing in front and to the right, 
when it was discovered that some of our troops were pressing 
down upon the enemy's left. In front of us was an open field 
with a ridge extending across parallel with our line, towards 
which we advanced. On reaching the top of the ridge the enemy 
was seen lying in an old road, seeking shelter behind its banks 
and other objects that afforded him protection. The order 
was given to charge, and the men responded with a shout, rush- 
ing across the field in the face of a furious fire. The scene was 
terrific beyond description. The yells of our men, the roar of 
musketry, the thunder of artillery, the shrieks of the wounded 
and dying, the screaming of shells, with the loud commands of 
the officers, all combined to excite and stimulate the men, who 
rushed across the field, closing up their ranks as their comrades 
fell, cut down by the enemy's fire, who held their ground stub- 
bornly until we were almost near enough to cross bayonets with 
him, when he gave way and fled in confusion. It was now 
night, and the men, exhausted with the terrible efibrts of the day, 
were glad to unroll their blankets and rest upon the ground. 

Such was the part borne by the Fourth Regiment in the battle 
of Cold Harbor. We lost heavily in proportion to our numbers. 
Of one hundred and fifty men eight were killed and fifty wound- 
ed. Among the wounded was the brave and faithful soldier, 
Captain John B. Andrews, who died afterwards from his wounds. 
Colonel Grimes had a horse killed under him, and led his men 
on foot until another was captured, which he rode the balance of 
the day. John A. Stikeleather, our color-bearer, acted with such 
coolness and bravery as to elicit the public commendation of the 

244 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

regimeDtal commander. Many instances of individual bravery 
might be mentioned if time and space would permit. Among 
the killed in this battle was the brave and gallant Captain Blount, 
who, though Quartermaster of the regiment, and not bound to 
go into danger, was acting as volunteer aid to General Anderson 
that day, and was shot while carrying the flag of one of the 

Major Grimes was made Colonel of the regiment. Captain 
Carter Lieutenant-Colonel, and Captain James H. Wood, Major. 
Colonel Carter's wound disabled him to such an extent that he 
was retired to light duty, and Major "Wood was made Lieutenant- 
Colonel in his place and Captain Osborne promoted to Major. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Wood's wound was also of a very stubborn 
character, and rendered it necessary for him to be put upon light 
duty for many months. 

The regiment participated in other movements of the army 
around Richmond, engaging in various skirmishes during the 
memorable campaign of the, seven days' fight. Together with 
the Fifth North Carolina Regiment it was detailed to bury the 
dead and both thus escaped the disastrous assault at Malvern 
Hill on the 2d of July. The brigade was reorganized so as to 
consist of the Second, Fourteenth, Thirtieth and Fourth North 
Carolina Regiments, and with the rest of Lee's army moved into 
Maryland, passing over the battlefield known as Second Manas- 
sas, crossing the Potomac near Leesburg. We encamped near 
Frederick City, and theuce, crossing the Blue Ridge, encamped 
near Boonsboro. 


On the 14th of September we took part in what is known 
as the battle of Boonsboro, or South Mountain. We had 
marched a few miles beyond the mountain pass, where we 
spent the night of the 13th of September in camp. Early 
on the morning of the 14th we were ordered back to the pass at 
double-quick. Soon we heard cannonading and musketry, indi- 
cating that a battle was in progress. When we reached the 

Fourth Regiment. 245 

summit of the mountain we found the enemy in heavy force 
pressing our men. The brigade under General Anderson was 
divided, he taking the Fourteenth and Thirtieth North Carolina 
Regiments to the left, or north of the pass, and directing Colonel 
Tew to take the Second and Fourth to the south of the road, or 
to the right, facing Frederick City. Filing some half mile to 
the right, we formed line of battle and moved in the direction of 
the firing; but when we approached the scene of action the firing 
ceased, and we found that the enemy had been repulsed by Gen- 
eral Garland's Brigade, but at the cost of the life of that gallant 
and faithful soldier, whose lifeless form was borne past us before 
we reached the scene of action. We then took position on the 
brow of the ridge. While iu this position the writer heard firing 
in front of our line, and started to make a reconnaissance to ascer- 
tain the cause. He cautiously crossed the stone fence behind 
which we lay and started to follow a wooden fence joining it at 
a right angle, when a shower of bullets clattered against the stone 
fence, admonishing him that his njovements were being closely 
observed by deadly foes. He quickly sought shelter behind the 
wall from which he had ventured, satisfied with his advanture, 
and thankful to escape unhurt. The regiment was then ordered 
to make a reconnaissance to the front and right, through the 
woods. Company H, under command of Captain Osborne, was 
deployed as skirmishers, with instructions to move slowly and 
silently through the thick forest and dense underwood in front 
of the regiment. Our progress was necessarily very slow, as the 
woods were very dense and the ground very rugged and moun- 
tainous. We moved toward the south and swung around 
gradually toward the east, marching about three-fourths of a mile, 
when we discovered a heavy force of the enemy in a field on the 
crest of the ridge, with a battery of field artillery. I at once 
reported this fact to General Anderson, who had now come up 
with the regiment, and quickly returned to the front, and was 
surprised to find the whole force of the enemy moving down upon 
us in line of battle. They opened upon us a heavy fire. Our 
men received them firmly, returning their fire with spirit. We 

246 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

had the advantage of shelter in the dense woods, while the enemy- 
was in the open field, and must have suffered severely; but soon 
night drew on and put a stop to the engagement. We then 
returned to the road from whence we had started early in the 
afternoon. Thus ended one of the most trying and, in some 
respects, one of the most splendid days of the war. General D. 
H. Hill had with the small force of about five or six thousand 
men bafiled and held in check all day long a force of probably 
ten times as many men, and enabled General Lee to get his 
forces together at Sharpsburg. The men bore themselves with 
much coolness and courage throughout the entire day. Oar loss 
in killed and wounded was small, but among them some of our 
best men. At night the army was withdrawn and moved to the 
vicinity of Sharpsburg, where we arrived at 11 o'clock on the 
15th and remained in line of battle most of the time until the 
morning of the 17th. The regiment was now under command 
of Captain W. T. Marsh, Colonel Grimes having been com- 
pelled to retire from the fieid on account of an injury received 
on the morning of the 14th at Boonsboro. 


Wednesday, the 17th of September, 1862, was a day that will 
go down in history as having witnessed one of the great battles 
of the war. Anderson's Brigade had been on the right of the 
division from the 14th until the morning of the 17th, when it 
was moved to the old road, afterwards known as the "Bloody 
Lane." The Fourth Regiment was commanded by Captain 
Marsh, the Second by Colonel Tew, the Thirtieth by Colonel 
Parker, the Fourteenth by Colonel Bennett, the brigade by 
General George B. Anderson, General D. H. Hill having com- 
mand of the division. The Thirtieth was on the right of the 
brigade, the Fourth next, then the Fourteenth, and the Second 
was on the left. About an hour after sunrise the enemy came 
in sight and began the attack at once. Anderson's Brigade was 
partially protected by the bank of the old road above mentioned, 
which ran parallel with the line of battle in rear of the crest of 

Fourth Regiment. 247 

a ridge which concealed our men from the enemy's sight until 
they were within seventy-five or eighty yards of us. 

About nine o'clock the enemy's line of battle appeared, mov- 
ing in magnificent style, with mounted officers in full uniform, 
swords gleaming, banners, plumes and sashes waving, and bayo- 
nets glistening in the sun. On they came with steady tramp 
and confident mien. They did not see our single line of hungry, 
jaded and dusty men, who were lying down, until within good 
musket shot, when we rose and delivered our fire with terrible 
effect. Instantly the air was filled with the cries of wounded 
and dying and the shouts of brave officers, trying to hold and 
encourage ' their men, who recoiled at the awful and stunning 
shock so unexpectedly received. Soon they rallied and advanced 
again ; this time more cautiously than before. Our men held 
their fire until they were within good range again, and again they 
rose to their feet and mowed them down, so that they were com- 
pelled to retire a second time; but they rallied and came again, 
and the battle now became general all along the line. The roar 
of musketry was incessant and the booming of cannon almost 
without intermission. Occasionally the shouts of men could be 
heard above the awful din, indicating a charge or some advantage 
gained by one side or the other. Horses without riders were 
rushing across the field, occasionally a section of artillery could 
be seen flying from one point to another, seeking shelter from 
some murderous assault, or securing a more commanding posi- 
tion. Soon Captain Marsh was mortally wounded and borne 
from the field. The command of the regiment then devolved 
upon Captain Osborne, who in turn was wounded and borne 
from the field. One by one the other company officers fell, 
either killed or wounded, until Second Lieutenant Weaver, of 
Company H, was in command of the handful of men who were 
left, and then he was killed bearing the colors of the regiment 
in his hand. The regiment was left without a commissioned 
officer; but the men needed none, except for general purposes. 
There were not more than one hundred and fifty men for duty, 
every one of whom seemed to realize his own value, and to act 

248 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

with that cool and determined courage which showed that he 
understood the emergency, and was determined to do his best. 
All day long the battle raged with almost unabated fury and 
with varying results, sometimes one side gaining the advantage 
and then the other. 

As the day wore away the contest seemed to gather new force. 
The enemy renewed their efforts to gain what they had failed to 
achieve during the day, while the Confederates were equally 
determined to defeat their aims. The flower of the two great 
armies had met in open field, and neither was willing to leave 
the other in possession. The Northern troops displayed wonder- 
ful courage and obstinancy during the entire day, while our men 
held their ground with equal courage and determination. Gen- 
eral Anderson and Colonel Parker were wounded. Colonel Tew 
was killed, and Colonel Bennett had command of the brigade. 
The men of different regiments became mixed with each other 
so that all distinct organization of regiments was broken up, and 
all identity lost — still the men maintained their positions in line, 
and fought like heroes. General Hill was with his men all day 
long, encouraging and cheering them by his presence and by his 
cool and fearless bearing. On two occasions the enemy approach- 
ed to within about thirty yards of our line, but each time they 
were forced to retire. 

Late in the day the enemy forced his way beyond the right of 
the brigade, and Colonel Bennett found it necessary to retire from 
the "Bloody Lane." This he did in good order, and in doing 
so passed within sixty yards of the right flank of the enemy's 
line; but they were so hotly engaged with one of our lines in 
front that they did not observe the Colonel's movement until he 
had extricated his men from their dangerous position, and passed 
some distance to the enemy's front and left. Finding a piece of 
artillery which had been abandoned, the Colonel manned it and 
opened fire upon the enemy's line. Captains Harney and Beall 
with Sergeant P. D. Weaver, all of the Fourteenth, were 
the men who manned the gun. In this movement the Fourth 
Regiment lost a number of men from companies I and K, on 

Fourth Regiment. 249 

the left, who were taken prisoners: being separated from the 
right by a little hillock, they did not know the retreat had taken 
place until they were in the hands of the enemy. This new 
position was held during the rest of the day. The command 
remained on the field until night, when the battle ended. They 
then bivouacked in a grove near by. 

The next day the brigade was commanded by Major Collins, 
Colonel Bennett having been disabled. The Fourth Regiment 
was commanded by Orderly Sergeant Thomas W. Stephenson, of 
Company C. General Hill had the brigade formed, and made a lit- 
tle speech to them, calling them "the faithful few," warmly com- 
mending their courage and fortitude during the fearful conflict 
of the day before. 

In this battle General George B. Anderson, who commanded 
the brigade, was wounded. His wound proved fatal, and the 
Confederacy lost one of its noblest defenders. He was the first 
Colonel of the Fourth Regiment. The writer of this sketch 
knew him well and loved him much. He was a perfect speci- 
men of a man in every way. A graduate of West Point, a 
devoted Churchman, a pure and chivalrous gentleman, as modest 
and chaste as a woman, as brave and daring as a man could be. 
His was a very great loss. 

The 18th day of September was spent near the hard fought 
field of the day before, in constant expectation of another engage- 
ment, while details were occupied in burying the dead and caring 
for the wounded; our own wounded being sent across the river 
to the Virginia side. At night all remaining baggage and troops 
crossed over; the writer of this narrative being left at the house 
of Mrs. Boteler, in Shepherdstown, Va., where he lay for six 
weeks in a most helpless and precarious condition from the 
wound received on the 17th, and where he received every atten- 
tion that human kindness could provide on the part of the mem- 
bers of the family, and also from Mr. Darnell, a faithful nurse 
detailed from the hospital, to whom he is indebted for his life. 
He would also mention with gratitude, his faithful negro servant, 
Gus, who remained with him during the time in spite of the 

250 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

efforts that were made to induce him to go away with the North- 
ern troops, who held the town where we were. 

On the 20th of September the regiment took part in the attack 
that was made on the Northern troops who had crossed the river 
near the town. This engagement proved disastrous to the enemy, 
many of them being killed, and many drowned in the river as 
they retreated across. Afterward the command was removed to 
the neighborhood of Fredericksburg, where it spent the winter 
doing picket duty and recruiting its numbers. The writer hav- 
ing been captured while wounded, in Shepherdstown, was not 
exchanged until after the battle of Fredericksburg. 


On the 13th of December our brigade was placed in position 
to support the artillery, preparatory to the battle of Fredericks- 
burg, which took place on the 15th. We were held in reserve 
until after the enemy had made the first charge, when the brigade 
was moved forward and took the front line, which it held the 
remainder of the day. Our loss in this engagement was but 
trifling, as we were protected by breastworks most of the time. 
Immediately after the battle of Fredericksburg we went into 
winter quarters on the south bank of the Rapidan River, where 
we remained for the balance of the winter. 


On the 1st of May, 1863, the enemy bagan to make demonstra- 
tions indicating a purpose of beginning the campaign. We now 
began that grand movement which, but for the untimely wound- 
ing of General Jackson, would have resulted in the entire 
destruction of Hooker's army. The brigade was commanded by 
the brave and gallant Ramseur, who displayed remarkable cour- 
age and skill in managing it during this campaign, and as long 
as he continued in command. The regiment was commanded by 
Colonel Grimes. After much skirmishing, and then a long and 
circuitous route, we found ourselves on the extreme right of 

Fourth Eegiment. 251 

Hooker's army. This was the 2d of May. Though late iu the 
afternoon, and the troops much fatigued, line of battle was 
formed, and the attack begun. We struck the enemy squarely 
OH the. flank, and everything gave way before us until night put 
a stop to our advance. Many prisoners and much baggage and 
stores were captured. We slept on the field that night, and on 
the 3d of May was fought th.e battle of Chancellorsville. 

The left of the Fourth Regiment was near the great road 
which ran in rear of the enemy's works and nearly parallel with 
them, our line of battle extending to the right of this road at 
right angles with it. At daylight the battle began, Jackson's 
Corps, now under Stuart, attacking the enemy's right, while other 
troops engaged their front. Ramseur's Brigade was formed in 
the rear of Paxton's brigade that held a line of breastworks which 
we had captured the day before. This brigade was ordered to 
advance and charge the enemy in front, but they failed to comply 
with the order, whereupon General Ramseur, who was present, 
and heard the command, offered to make the charge. The order 
was then given in the presence of Colonel Grimes, when they 
both hurried back to the brigade and ordered the men forward. 
When the breastworks were reached the men who occupied them 
were lying down, our men passing literally over them and across 
the works, formed line of battle in front of the enemy, in the 
face of a destructive fire. The command "Double-quick" was 
given, when the Fourth Regiment, under Colonel Grimes, and 
part of the Second, under Colonel Cox, moved forward and 
drove the enemy from their works. There were several batteries 
on the hill in front, but when the infantry left the works the 
artillery was quickly abandoned. These batteries had done ter- 
rible havoc among our troops as they approached the enemy's 
lines. Several efforts were made by the enemy to recover their 
works, but they were driven back each time with heavy loss. 
Afterwards they extended their lines and came down upon our 
right flank, threatening to cut off our retreat, when we were com- 
pelled to fall back and rejoin the other part of the brigade, which 
still occupied the line from which the charge had been made. 

252 NoKTH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Colonel Grimes received a severe contusion in this part of the 
engagement, and when he reached the breastworks referred to 
he fell fainting to the ground. He soon revived and was ready 
for action again. Meanwhile General Rodes came up and 
ordered the troops, who had refused to charge, to move forward, 
when the whole line, thus re-inforced, returned and captured the 
entire line of works. Our loss was very severe. Forty-six 
oiScers and men were killed outright, fifty-seven wounded, and 
fifty-eight captured, out of three hundred and twenty-seven 
officers and men who went into the engagement. 

General Cox, in his address on the "Life and Character of 
General Ramseur," gives a copy of a letter from General Lee to 
Governor Vance, in which he speaks in terms of high praise of 
the conduct of Ramseur and his brigade in this engagement, 
and states that General Jackson had sent him a message to the 
same effect, after he was wounded, in reference to his conduct 
the day before. General Ramseur in his official report says : 

" The charge of the brigade, made at a critical moment, when 
the enemy had broken and was hotly pressing the centre of the 
line in front with apparently overwhelming numbers, not only 
checked his advance, but threw him back in disorder and pur- 
sued him with heavy loss from his last line of works. Too 
high praise cannot be accredited to officers and men for their 
gallantry, manly courage and fortitude during this brief but 
arduous campaign. 

" The advance of the line on Friday was made under the eyes 
of our departed hero (Jackson) and of General A. P. Hill, 
whose words of commendation and praise bestowed on the field 
we fondly cherish. And on Sunday the magnificent charge of 
the brigade upon the enemy's last and most terrible stronghold 
was made in view of General Stuart and General Rodes, whose 
testimony that it was the most glorious charge of that most 
glorious day, we are proud to remember and report to our kindred 
and friends. All met the enemy with unflinching courage; and 
for privation, hardships and splendid marches, all of which were 

Fourth Regiment. 253 

cheerfully borne, they deserve the praise of our beautiful and 
glorious Confederacy." 

The victory was complete, and we were left in undisputed 
possession of the field. Nothing could surpass the dashing skill 
and courage of the brilliant and accomplished Ramseur on this 
occasion, and the day before, while the intrepid Grimes shone 
with magnificent splendor by his side. They were like two lion- 
hearted brothers, while the gallant Cox, heroic Parker and the 
brave and sturdy Bennett, always in the thickest of the fight, 
and where duty called, constituted a galaxy that any country 
might well be proud to own. It was a dearly bought victory — 
many of our best young men laid down their lives that day. 
After a few weeks' rest and recuperation the command was again 
on the move, 


On the 9th of June we supported the Confederate cavalry at 
Brandy Station. Though under fire, we were not actively 
engaged. We then went to the Valley and assisted in driving 
the enemy from Berryville and Martinsburg, and on the 15th of 
June crossed into Maryland with Lee's airmy and participated in 
the Gettysburg campaign. The conduct of the men on this 
march through the enemy's country was orderly and gentlemanly 
in the highest degree. There was no straggling, no disorder and 
no plundering. The only disturbance of the property of the 
country the writer saw was the men helping themselves to the 
splendid supplies of cherries that grew along the lanes through 
which we passed. 


On the 1st of July, 1863, we moved off about sunrise toward 
Gettysburg. About 3 o'clock p. m. we arrived at the scene of 
action. The battle bad begun, as was apparent from the roar 
of artillery and musketry in our front and to the right. The 
Fourth Regiment was on the left of the brigade, under Colonel 
Grimes. We were ordered forward in advance of the main line 

254 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

of battle. We had only moved a few paces when our direction 
was changed by the right flank. Marching a few hundred yards, 
we were recalled by General Rodes and formed on a hill, in 
connection with the Second Regiment, to repel an attack that was 
threatened from that quarter. In a few minutes a brigade of 
Federals appeared in our front, moving obliquely to the left 
instead of advancing towards us. Genera! Rodes then ordered 
the Second and Fourth Regiments to advance upon them. Soon 
we were exposed to a severe fire, enfilading our lines from the 
woods on the right, which caused Colonel Grimes to change front 
to the right. We then advanced upon the enemy, and being 
joined by the other two regiments of the brigade, we drove them 
before us in much confusion, capturing a large number of prison- 
ers. We were the first to enter the town of Gettysburg, and 
halted to rest on the road leading out toward the west. Here 
we remained until night, when we were ordered to make a night 
attack; but after approaching within a short distance of the 
enemy's lines the order was countermanded, and we returned to 
the position first occupied. On the 3d of July we were under 
heavy firing from the enemy's guns, but only a few men were 
hurt, as we were protected by a ridge. We lost some valuable 
men in this battle, among whom was Lieutenant John Stockton, 
of Company H. He was a brave, modest, conscientious, Christian 
soldier, just in the beginning of his manhood. The regiment 
behaved splendidly in this battle. In fact, the men had become 
so much accustomed to marching and fighting that we never 
thought of their doing otherwise. 

On the 5th of July, Ewell's Corps began the retreat from 
Gettysburg, and the regiment formed part of the rearguard of 
the army, which position it occupied until ^ the army recrossed 
the Potomac at or near Hagerstown. The men bore the hard- 
ships and privations of this most trying campaign with remarka- 
ble cheerfulness and fortitude. After crossing the Potomac into 
Virginia, we went to Orange Court House, where we remained 
doing picket duty until about the middle of November, when 
we went into winter quarters some eight miles from that town, 

Fourth Eegiment. 255 

and spent the winter doing picket duty on the Eappahannock, 
participating in the skirmish at Kelley's Ford, and also at Mine 


On the 5th of May, 1864, General Grant began his movement 
toward Richmond, having crossed the Rapidan with more than 
a hundred thousand men. From that day until the close of the 
campaign the regiment was actively engaged almost every day. 
On the 8th of May two companies of the regiment were detailed 
to strengthen the line of sharp-shooters commanded by Major 
Osborne, now numbering, so re-inforced, some three hundred 
men. After manoeuvering for some time with the enemy, Gen- 
eral Ramseur rode to the front and ordered a charge. The men 
moved off in a double-quick, crossing a field some two hundred 
and fifty yards wide, and driving the enemy's skirmishers before 
us. We encountered a line of battle on the top of the ridge. 
With a shout, the men pushed forward, and the enemy's line gave 
way, leaving their baggage in heaps where they had piled it pre- 
paratory to an engagement. 

On the 9th of May we had a sharp encounter with the enemy 
in force. After some twenty minutes fighting, we advanced 
upon them, when they retired. On the lOth and 11th our sharp- 
shooters were actively engaged, day and night, and the regiment 
kept in line of battle most of the time. On the evening of the 
11th an attack was made upon our right, breaking the line. 
General Battle's (Alabama) Brigade rushed in and supported the 
line that had been driven back, and with the aid of our brigade, 
which charged the enemy's right flank, they were driven back 
and the line was restored after a most stubborn and determined 
resistance on the part of the foe. On the morning of the 12th 
of May the euemy made a furious assault upon General Edward 
Johnston's line, half a mile to our right, breaking the line and 
capturing many men. Rodes' Division was ordered to retrieve 
the loss. The fate of the army was at stake. Ramseur, with 
his brigade, led the charge, and in the face of the most murderous 
fire drove back the foe and restored the broken line. Ramseur 

266 jSToeth Caeolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

was wounded in this charge when near the retaken works. Colo- 
nel Grimes took command of the brigade for the remainder of 
that day and for some days after. Lieutenant-Colonel Wood 
was now in command of the regiment, and continued in com- 
mand until his death. He was a most faithful, brave and consci- 
entious Christian soldier; a lovely gentleman and skillful officer. 
The broken line was retaken after a most fearful encounter, and 
held until after 2 o'clock at night, during which time we repelled 
more than twenty distinct and desperate attempts of the enemy 
to retake the works we had recaptured in the morning. 

Speaking of the battle of the 12th of May, an army cor- 
respondent of the London Herald says : 

"Ramseur's Brigade of North Carolina Troops being, ordered 
to charge, were received by the enemy with stubborn resistance. 
The desperate character of the struggle along that brigade was 
told terribly by the rapidity of its musketry. So close was the 
fighting there for a time, that the fire of friends and foe rose up 
rattling in one common roar. Ramseur's North Carolinians 
dropped thick and fast, but he continued with glorious constancy 
to gain ground, foot by foot. Pressing under a fierce fire reso- 
lutely on, on, on, the struggle was about to become one of hand- 
to-hand, when the Federalists shrank from the bloody trial, 
driven back, but not defeated. They bounded on the opposite 
side of the earth-works, placing them in their front, and renew- 
ed the conflict. A rush of an instant brought Ramseur's men 
to the side of the defenses; and though they crouched close 
to the slopes under an enfilade from the guns of the salient their 
musketry rattled in deep and deadly fire on the enemy that stood 
in overwhelming numbers but a few yards from their front. 
Those brave North Carolinians had thus, ih one of the hottest 
conflicts of the day, driven the enemy from the works that had 
been occupied during the previous night by a brigade which 
until May the 12th, had never yielded to a foe — ' The Stonewall.' " 
** *****^ 

Ramseur, though suffering much from the wound in his hand 
would not leave the field until the fight was over, and soon 


1. W. C. Cougliinoiir, Captain, Co. K. 

a. William F. Kelly, Captain, Co. G. 

3. S. A. Kelly, Captain, Co. G. 

4. Jesse S. Barnes, Captain, Co. F. 

5. John B. Andrews, Captain, Co. C. 

0. H. M. Warren, Captain, Co. F. 

7. M. L. Bean, Captain, Co. K. 

8. Tliomas M. Allen, Captain, Co. E. 

Fourth Regiment. 257 

afterwards resumed the command of his brigade with his arm in 
a sling. 

This was one of the most splendid achievements of the war, 
and was accomplished in magnificent style. Ramseur, on his 
fiery steed, looked like an angel of war. Grimes, too, was on 
his horse, the very picture of coolness, grira determination and 
undaunted courage, while Wood and the other officers and men 
moved into the horrible conflict like men of iron and steel. The 
enemy, flushed with their temporary success, stood their ground 
with persistent and stubborn firmness, and poured into our ranks 
a destructive fire. But onward moved our lion-hearted men, 
closing up their rapidly thinning ranks, and pouring a continuous 
storm of leaden hail into the enemy's ranks, as he slowly, but 
stubbornly retired, until he reached the line of works, as 
described above, from which he was driven almost at the very 
point of the bayonet. The pits at the breastworks were filled 
with water from recent rains; many dead and wounded from 
both sides were lying in the pits when we reached them. The 
water was red with human gore. The bodies of the dead were 
dragged out, and the men took shelter in their places, which they 
held for the balance of the day. The writer received a painful 
contusion from a ball that passed through a heavy canteen of 
water which he carried, and which no doubt saved his life. 
After recovering from the temporary shock, he resumed his place 
in line of battle, where he remained the rest of the day. After 
the battle General Rodes thanked the brigade in person, saying 
they deserved the thanks of the country, and that they had saved 
Ewell's Corps. General Early also made a similar statement in 
regard to this occasion. Our loss included some of the best of 
our brave and well tried men. Among the number was Cap- 
tain William McRorie, of Company A, as brave and gallant a 
youth as ever drew a sword. About 2 o'clock in the morning 
we changed our position to one more advantageous, which we 
held until the 19th of May. The position occupied by the 
brigade was just to the left of "the bloody angle," the right of 
the Fourth Regiment extending to within a few rods of the 

258 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

angle, where the trees were literally cut down by minie- balls 
from the enemy's guns. This was one of the most prolonged 
and stubbornly contested engagements of the war. It began 
about halfpast ifive in the morning and lasted until near two 
o'clock the next morning, and the enemy made very many assaults 
upon the lines during the time, but without avail. 

On the 19th of May we made a flank movement upon the left 
of Grant's army, which resulted in a heavy engagement. Here 
we met the enemy in the open field, without breastworks on 
either side. Both sides were determined to do their best, and 
displayed the most undaunted courage. Night put an end to the 
engagement, and the next morning found both armies some dis- 
tance from the scene of the engagement. Our loss was sixty- 
five men killed and wounded. Among the former was the brave 
and gallant Christian soldier, Augustus Byers, and among the 
latter the writer of this narrative. 

In speaking of this engagement of the 19th of May, General 
Grimes in his notes says: "Two of the 'Old Guard' killed — 
Gus Byers . and Taylor. The old Fourth lost sixty-five 
killed and wounded." The regiment was under the command 
of Colonel Wood, and acted with its usual courage and firmness 
under a very trying ordeal, being at one time completely flanked 
by the enemy ; but by a skillful movement we changed front to 
the left and met the foe in good order. This was an open field 
engagement, and both sides deported themselves with much 
courage and determination. After this the command was kept 
continually on the move until the army reached the vicinity of 
Richmond ; in fact, for the rest of the summer and fall. 

On the 22d of May we reached Hanover Junction, after much 
manoeuvering and skirmishing, the enemy endeavoring to flank 
us. On the 25th a severe fight came ofi", and again on the 30tb, 
in both of which the enemy was repulsed. Our loss in these 
engagements was small. Again on the 3d of June a fierce and 
bloody engagement occurred, in which the enemy again retired. 
This was one of the bloodiest fights of the campaign, and the 
enemy's loss was very heavy. 

Fourth Regiment. 259 

On the 13th of June the division moved in the direction of 
South Anna River to meet the reported advance of General Hun- 
ter. General Grimes was now in command of the division, in 
the absence of General Rodes. 

On the 4th of July Harper's Ferry was captured with con- 
siderable stores and a number of prisoners. This was a gala 
day for the Confederates. The enemy had prepared a sumptuous 
feast, and was celebrating the day, when our men made the 
attack, drove him out of the town, and captured everything 
just as he was about to begin the feast. Of course our hungry 
and thirsty men enjoyed the booty to the fullest extent. 

On the 6th of July the command crossed the Potomac at 
Shepherdstown, Va., and on the 7th passed through Fredrick 
City, going towards Washington City, meeting with slight 
resistance from the few troops who were left there. At the 
Monocacy River we encountered General Wallace, who had been 
sent to intercept and resist our advance. His troops occupied 
the east bank of the river, but his skirmishers were on the west 
side. These were driven back, and after a short engagement the 
whole Federal force gave way, leaving the field, with their dead 
and wounded, in our hands, with five or six hundred prisoners. 
The Federals fought well, and our loss was severe; but the 
troops were in good spirits. The command moved on to Rock- 
ville on the 10th, and on the 11th reached Eleventh Street Pike, 
which leads into the City of Washington, and advanced to the 
neighborhood of Fort Stephens. After two or three days we be- 
gan the retreat for Virginia, during which there were frequent 
skirmishes but no important engagements. The command 
recrossed the Potomac at Leesburg, crossed the Blue Ridge at 
Snicker's Gap and the Shenandoah at Snicker's Ford. 

snicker's gap. 

On the 18th of July the regiment participated in a fierce and 
bloody encounter with the enemy near Snicker's Gap. Several 
brigades of Federal troops had crossed to the south side of the 
Shenandoah, leaving a considerable force on the north bank as a 

260 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. ■ 

support and a cover for their movements. This force could not 
be reached by our men, but isept up an annoying fire upon us 
while we engaged the force on the south side of the river. Here 
occurred one of the most exciting scenes of the war. The enemy 
pursuing Ewell, had crossed to the south side of the river. Our 
men hurried back to meet them, and when they came in sight the 
enemy had formed line of battle parallel with and on the south 
side of the river. Our men were in lineof battle on the ridge several 
hundred yards to the south. About half way between the two 
lines, in the valley, was a stone fence. As soon as this was seen 
our men made a dash for it. The Federals seeing this, and 
knowing the value of such a defence, made a dash for it at the 
same time. Away went both lines of battle at full speed as fast 
as their feet could carry them, scarcely taking time to fire a single 
shot, both lines running for dear life to gain this coveted prize. 
But our men had the advantage of down grade, and gained the 
wall, while the enemy was some fifty or more yards away, and 
in much disorder. He instantly faced about when he saw 
that our men would reach the wall first, and beat a hasty retreat, 
making for the ford at which he had crossed. Our men 
opened fire upon him and he suffered heavily, leaving many 
of his men and three regimental flags on the field. The 
brigade charged the enemy and drove him in and across the 
river, capturing many prisoners. 

Among the soldiers who fell that day was the brave and gallant 
Colonel James H. "Wood, who was in command of the regiment 
at the time he fell. No better man died during the warthan this 
splendid soldier. He was a Christian gentlemen, a young man 
of much promise, and a rnodel soldier; brave, gallant and faith- 
ful. He died at the post of duty, giving his life a willing sacri- 
fice for the cause of liberty, which he loved more than life itself. 
At this engagement also fell Colonel W. A. Owens, of the Fifty- 
third (N. C.) Regiment, and Lieutenant-Colonel W. S. Stallings, 
of the Second (N. C.) Eegiment. All of these brave and gallant 
men were much beloved in the army and at home, and in their 
deaths the cause lost three of its most splendid men. 

Fourth Regiment. 261 

After this fight the enemy's sharp-shooters annoyed our men 
very much with their long-range rifles, firing from the tree-tops. 
A man of the Fourth Regiment, whose name I have not been 
able to learn, discovered one of these sharp-shooters in the top 
of a tree. He ran from tree to tree until within range of his 
own gun, and brought him down the first shot. The enemy's 
men ran oiut and fired upon this daring Confederate, while our 
men rushed to his rescue; but they could not save him — he 
fell pierced with bullets. There was no more firing from the 
trees at that place. 

The command of the regiment now devolved upon Captain 
S. A. Kelly, of Company G, who continued in command until 
wounded and captured at the battle of Winchester, when Major 
Stansill was put in command, which he retained until the month 
of March, when he gave it up on account of a wound, and Cap- 
tain Forcum commanded it until the surrender. The brigade, 
under command of General William R. Cox, was kept constantly 
on the move in the neighborhood of Berry ville, Newtown, Mid- 
dletown, Strasburg, Kearnstown and Bunker Hill, sometimes 
tearing up the railroad track ; again skirmishing with the enemy, 
and then resting for a few days, awaiting orders; at one time 
crossing the Potomac and going as far as Hagerstown, Md. ; then 
returning rapidly to Bunker Hill, and from there to Winchester ; 
and then again to Strasburg and Harper's Ferry. The health 
and spirits of the men were good, and they were always pleased 
to be in motion, even if it involved a skirmish with the enemy. 
At Stevenson's Depot and Berryville there was considerable 
fighting, with variable results; sometimes retreating, and some- 
times advancing ; but most generally the latter, as the enemy's 
forces were at that time usually small, and they not much dis- 
posed to make a stubborn fight. 


On the 19th of September the brigade was under arms at an 
early hour. About 10 o'clock a. m. line of battle was formed 
by three brigades of the division. Grimes (Rodes') on the 

262 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. « 

right, Cox in the center and Cooke on the left. Our command 
was on the left of the Winchesler and Martinsburg road. ^ We 
soon engaged the enemy, who had approached near our position, 
and who after a short encounter gave way. Cox pressed him vigo- 
rously through an open field, while Grimes drove him through the 
woods, Cooke supporting our left. At this point General Rodes 
was killed, but the men did not observe the fact at the time. 
So they pressed on, driving everything before them, and captured 
a number of prisoners who had secreted themselves in a ditch. 
The brigade moved on to the crest of the ridge where Grimes 
had formed his line. Here General Evans' Brigade was driven 
back, leaving our left exposed. A battery was sent to our relief 
and the advance of the enemy checked at this point. Between 
4 and 5 o'clock we fell back in good order, as the enemy had 
passed our left and threatened our rear. Line of battle was 
formed upon the crest of some hills, from which we advanced, 
again driving the enemy, but being outflanked, we had to retire 
again, which was done in good order. The whole army was 
now in retreat. Our division held the enemy in cheek until the 
greater part of our men had withdrawn, and then retreated in 
column for some distance, when the brigade formed line of bat- 
tle and protected the artillery until night. We then continued 
the retreat until we came to Fisher's Hill. The Fourth Regi- 
ment was actively engaged with the brigade during this engage- 
ment and suffered considerably. Among the killed was the 
brave and devoted soldier. Lieutenant T. W. Stevenson, of 
Company C, and a number of our best men of the ranks. 

This was a most disastrous day for the Confederacy. The 
brave and gallant Rodes and many valuable officers and men 
were killed. The battle lasted nine hours, and the men were 
under arms for forty-eight hours, with but little chance for rest 
or rations. The command returned to Strasburg, from there to 
New Market, fighting much of the way, and keeping in good 
order. From Port Republic we marched to Weir's Cave, thence 
to Waynesboro, Mt. Sidney, Harrisonburg, and back again to 
New Market. 

Fourth Eegiment. 263 


Our next encounter with the enemy was at Cedar Creek. By a 
well planned flank movement, after marching all night, we attack- 
ed the enemy at daylight on the 19th of October, 1864. The 
surprise was complete, and the enemy fled from his tents without 
arms, and many of the men in their night clothes. So completely 
were they demoralized that a whole division fled before our little 
brigade, having made but slight resistance. Some six thousand 
prisoners and much artillery and baggage were captured. Until 
3 o'clock everything was ours. But between 3 and 4 o'clock 
p. M. the enemy rallied under the direction of General Sheridan, 
who met the retreating columns about that time, turned them 
back, and wrested most of the fruits of the victory, except the 
prisoners, from our grasp. Ramseur, the brave successor of the 
gallant Rodes, was mortally wounded, and our command barely 
escaped being captured. As an evidence of the severity of this 
i5ght, there stands a marble shaft on the field with an inscription 
which states that it marks the place where the Eighth Vermont 
Regiment fought that day, and that of one huodred and sixty- 
four men and sixteen officers they lost one hundred and ten men 
and thirteen officers killed and wounded. The loss of the Fourth 
Regiment in this fight was comparatively small, but among the 
number was the brave and gallant Lieutenant William Richard 
McNeely, of Company A, than whom a better soldier never 
drew a sword. Among the wounded was John A. Stikeleather, 
the faithful standard-bearer of the regiment, who soon recovered, 
however, and bore the colors of the Fourth Regiment until the 

When Ramseur fell. General Grimes, our former Colonel, took 
command of the division, which he retained until the close of 
the war. This was a sad day for our cause. We were simply 
overpowered by numbers, the enemy having about five men to 
our one. As it was, our division held its own, or rather was 
victorious, until the troops on the left gave way about 4 o'clock 

264 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

in the afternoon, and then it was compelled to retire, but retained 
its organization and saved the army from a complete rout. 


On this campaign occurred one of those most trying experi- 
ences to a soldier's nerves, namely, a night attack. It was 
known that the enemy was in the neighborhood. After night 
the men were ordered to lay aside everything that could make a 
noise, such as canteens, tin cups, pans, etc. At a late hour, when 
all was quiet, an order was passed down the line in a whisper 
to move slowly and stealthily forward. After going considerable 
distance and approaching near the enemy's line, some one stepped 
on a rail, or a pole, which broke with a loud report. Instantly 
every man fell with his face to the ground. A stream of fire 
blazed out along the enemy's line, and a shower of bullets 
whistled over their heads. The next instant the men were on 
their feet firing and yelling as they advanced. The lines were 
so near and the movement of our men so rapid that the Federals 
could not reload their guns, so they fled through the woods in 
the dark, and our men were glad to rest until morning. 

On the 23d of November the command was marched from 
New Market to meet a heavy force of cavalry that approached 
Rood's Hill. After considerable fighting the enemy was routed 
and driven away. The ground was covered with snow, and the 
men suffered much from cold and exposure. On the 13th of 
December, 1864, the command went to Petersburg, where they 
spent the winter, sharing the dangers and hardships of the seige. 
On the 25th of March, 1865, General Grimes made an attack 
upon the enemy's works at Petersburg, capturing a number of 
prisoners and twelve pieces of artillery; but the Fourth Regiment 
did not participate in this affair, as the courier got lost in the dark 
and failed to deliver the orders to the officer in command. The 
1st of April, 1865, the enemy attacked the line on our right and 
left, bat did not molest our brigade. The fight at Fort Gregg 
was very fierce, and the men of our command saw the fall of 
that stronghold, but could afford no assistance, as their own front 

Fourth Eegxment. 265 

would have been exposed had they left their position. On the 
6th, Grimes' Division was covering Lee's retreat, when a 
determined stand was made at Sailor's Creek and the enemy 
held in check until both flanks of the division were turned by 
supsrior numbers, and the command was saved from capture by 
a rapid retreat. Grimes staid with his men until all were over 
the creek and the bridge destroyed, then plunging his horse, 
Warren, into the water, crossed over under a perfect storm of 
bullets and made his escape. 

On the 7th of April Cox's Brigade, with two others, under 
General Grimes, formed line of battle and hurried to the relief 
of General Mahone, whose line was giving way before the enemy. 
A charge was made and the enemy driven back and a large num- 
ber of prisoners captured. General Lee complimented the men 
in person for their gallantry on this occasion. On the 8th the 
men marched all day, hungry, tired and sore, but cheerful and 
brave. About 9 o'clock that night heavy firing was heard in 
front, when the men were ordered forward, and marched most of 
the night, passing through the town of Apporaatox Court House 
before day, Sunday morning, the 9th, and engaged in the fight 
which occurred near that place. The enemy was repulsed and 
the men were withdrawn after driving the enemy from his posi- 
tion, and the division started to rejoin the main body of Gordon's 
Corps. General Grimes rode forward and asked General Gordon 
where he should form his men. The general answered, "Any- 
where you please." Struck by this answer. Grimes asked for 
an explanation, when he was told that the army had been sur- 
rendered by General Lee. 

I close this part of this sljetch with the following quota- 
tion from an address delivered by Henry A. London, Esq., of 
Pittsboro. After telling how General Grimes had planned 
and carried out successfully the last fight made by any part 
of General Lee's army on the 9th of May at Appomattox 
Court House, and had driven the enemy away from General 
Lee's front, driving them for nearly a mile, he continues: 
"General Grimes then sent a messenger to General Gordon, 

266 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

annouDcing his success, and that the road to LyDchburg was now 
open for the escape of the wagons. Then, to his great surprise, 
he i-eceived orders to retire, which he declined to do, thinking 
that General Gordon did not understand the commanding posi- 
tion held by him. General Gordon still continued to send orders 
to withdraw, which General Grimes continued to disregard, still 
thinking that General Gordon was in ignorance of his position, 
until finally an order came from General Lee himself, and then 
slowly and sullenly our men began to retrace their 'Steps over the 
ground from which they had so successfully driven the enemy. 
This withdrawal was conducted in an orderly manner, although in 
the immediate front of a greatly superior force. At one time the 
enemy, with loud cheers, made a sudden rush as if to overwhelm 
our little band ; but the brigade of General W. R. Cox ( which 
was bringing up the rear) faced about, and with the steadiness 
of veterans on parade, poured such a sudden and deadly volley 
into the astonished Federals that they hastily retired in confusion. 
This was the last volley fired at Appomattox, and the last ever 
fired by the grand old Army of Northern Virginia." 


Colonel George B. Anderson has been spoken of. He was a 
remarkable man. He had a handsome figure, was a fine horse- 
man; a splendid tactician; had a clear, musical voice; a mild 
blue-gray eye; a fine golden beard, long and flowing, and a very 
commanding presence. His discipline was mild, but firm; and 
his courage and patriotism of the very highest order. He was 
a firm believer in God and a devout Churchman. 

Lieutenant-Colonel John Augustus Young has also been 
mentioned. He was a gentleman of the olden type; a Christian 
of a high order, and a devoted patriot; kind and genial in his 
nature; and a devoted Southern man. If he had been permitted 
to remain with the regiment he would no doubt have proved 
himself a worthy successor to the peerless Anderson. 

Colonel Bryan Grimes was a soldier of a very high order. 
His coolness and unwavering courage, as well as his judgment 

Fourth Regiment. 267 

and skill, commanded the confidence and respect of all who knew 
him, and he was widely known. He was a most conscientious, 
man, and a firm believer in the Gospel of Christ. 

Colonel James H. Wood was cut down in the beginning of a 
most promising career. He was a true and faithful soldier. 
Cool, dashing and skillful. A man who feared God and eschewed 
evil. His loss was most deeply felt in the regiment. He was 
not quite twenty-four years old. 

Major A. K. Simonton fell just in the beginning of the war. 
He was a prominent figure in the regiment, and gave promise of 
a most brilliant career. He was a soldier by nature, and a gen- 
tleman in every sense of the word. 

Lieutenant-Colonel David M. Carter was a prominent lawyer 
before and after the war. He was a brave and sturdy soldier. 
Being permanently disabled by a wound received at Seven Pines, 
he was assigned to duty as Judge Advocate of the General Court- 
martial, where he continued until the close of the war. 

Captain F. Y. McNeely resigned early in the war on account 
of bad health. He was killed by the enemy in the raid that 
was made upon Salisbury at the close of the war. 

Captain Jesse S. Barnes was killed at Seven Pines. He was 
a splendid young officer of great promise; a most intelligent, 
genial and promising man; a man of education, young and 
talented ; a good soldier, and very highly esteemed in the regi- 

Captain William T. Marsh was mortally wounded at Sharps- 
burg. He was standing within two feet of the writer of this 
sketch when stricken. He was a man of education, intelligence 
and great force of character and a good soldier. 

Major John W. Dunham was also a prominent character in 
the Fourth Regiment. He was a gallant soldier, and a man of 
unusual promise. His wound, received early in the war, dis- 
abled him for life, and finally, after untold suffering, caused his 

Captain W. C. Coughenour was also a striking figure in the 
Fourth Regiment. He entered the service as First Lieutenant of 

268 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Company K, and was in all the engagements with the regiment 
but one; and was twice wounded. He was Brigade Inspector 
under Generals Eamseur and Cox, and in 1865 was made 
Inspector-General of Dearing's Cavalry Brigade, afterwards Gen- 
eral Roberts' Brigade. As good and true a man as ever lived. 

Major J. F. Stansill did good service in the Fourth Regiment. 
He was in most of the battles with the regiment, and was five 
times wounded. He was a man of courage and always at the 
post of duty. 

Captain John B. Andrews was a man much beloved in the 
Fourth Regiment. As gentle and modest as a woman, yet a brave 
and faithful soldier. He was wounded at Cold Harbor,, from 
which he died. 

Captain John B. Forcum, of Company H, was one of the 
faithful men of the regiment. Seldom sick or wounded, he was 
always at his post, and was in command of the regiment at the 

Conspicuous among the officers of the regiment were the mem- 
bers of the medical staff. Dr. J. K. King was a very striking 
man in person, character and ability. He soon resigned on 
account of bad health. 

Chief Surgeon J. F. Shaffner, M. D., was a young man of 
splendid ability ; a man of education and fine attainments, and 
always faithful to the important task committed to him. 

Assistant Surgeon J. M. Hadley, M. D., was also a man of 
€ducation, talent and ability, ever working in harmony with 
his chief. 

Hospital Steward, Dr. J. W. Guffy, was also a most excellent 
man, and as fuithful to his duty as a man could be. The patient 
and untiring devotion of these gentlemen to the interest and 
welfare of the men of the regiment won for them the undying 
gratitude of us all. 

Captain Thomas H. Blount and Captain John D. Hyman were 
Quartermaster and Commissary of the regiment. Both were 
men of education and ability. Though non-combatants, yet 

Fourth Regiment. 269 

both volunteered as aids to General Anderson. The former was 
killed and the latter permanently disabled. 

Captain W. G. Kelly commanded the regiment in the battle 
of Fredericksburg, after which he resigned, and his brother. Cap- 
tain S. A. Kelly, was appointed in his place. The latter bravely 
led his company through many trying and bloody campaigns, 
and was for some time in command of the regiment. He was 
wounded and captured at Winchester in 1864. 

Captain W. S. Barnes was for two years Adjutant of the regi- 
ment. But when Colonel Grimes was promoted he was made 
Captain and given a place on his staff, where he continued till the 
close of the war. All know how true and faithful he was. 

No better man ever wore the gray than Captain Marcus Hofflin. 
He was transferred to light duty on account of lameness in his 
feet, after he had seen much hard service and suffered very much. 

Captains C. S. Alexander, W. G. Falls and William McRorie 
were a splendid trio — school-mates of the writer. Alexander 
and Falls fell at Chancellorsville and McRorieat Spottsylvania. 
He fell within two feet of the writer, and expired without a 

Lieutenant W. R. McNeely, who fell at the battle of Cedar 
Creek, was one of Iredell county's heroes. He was senior officer 
on the left of the regiment when he fell, and his loss was a serious 
one to his command. He was a cool and skillful officer and a 
good man. 

Lieutenants James Rufus Reid and Joseph C. White were two 
shining lights in the regiment. The former, though scarcely 
seventeen years old, a man in character, and much beloved by 
liis seniors and subordinates, fell a victim to disease early in the 
war. The latter was killed at Seven Pines. 

Lieutenants Watson, Cowan, Barber and Burke, of Company 
B, were all good men, and did their duties well while in the war. 

Lieutenant Thomas J. Brown was a good soldier. He was 
transferred to the Forty-second Regiment and became its Ma- 
jor. Lieutenants F. A. Carlton and A. S. Fraley were good 
soldiers and an honor to the cause. W. K. Eliason was assigned 

270 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

special duty and also J. A. Cowan. Captains W. A. Kerr and G. 
A. Andrews were most excellent men; both were delicate m 
constitution. The former resigned early in the war and the 
latter was permanently disabled by a wound and died soon after 
the war. Lieutenant J. Pink Cowan, of Company A, was a 
brave and gallant soldier. He was killed at Chancellorsville. 

Lieutenant Thomas L. Perry, of Company E, was a most 
gallant soldier ; a man of education and intelligence, and faith- 
ful to his duties. He was mortally wounded at Seven Pines. 

Private William M. Durell, of Company K, was a good soldier. 
He was a Northern man, but devoted to the cause of the South, 
and fought through the war as a matter of principle. 

Captain E. S. Marsh was a good soldier and a worthy suc- 
cessor of his brother, the gallant and devoted soldier. Captain 
William T. Marsh, who was mortally wounded at Sharpsburg. 
He was appointed Major of the regiment, permanently disabled 
by a wound, and put upon light duty. 

Lieutenant Hamilton C. Long was wounded at Seven Pines, 
and resigned. 

Lieutenant J. W. Shinn was a talented and noble soldier, deli- 
cate in health, but always at his post. He fell a prey to disease. 

Lieutenant John Z. Dalton resigned early in the war. 

There was no better soldier and no stronger character in the 
regiment than Captain H. M. Warren, of Company F. W. O. 
Wootten, of the same company, was a good soldier. Also, Cap- 
tain T. M. Allen, who was wounded and captured. He was a 
good soldier. 

The writer remembers Lieutenants Creekman, Tuten, Bonner 
and Styron, of Company A, as good representative men of their 

We were blessed in having two good and faithful men of God 
as chaplains. The first was the Rev. William A. Wood. He 
soon resigned on account of ill health, and was succeeded by the 
Rev. Robert B. Anderson. Both were men of ability and did 
good service in their holy calling. 

The survivors of the Fourth Regiment will no doubt remem- 


1. W. S. Barnes, Ordnance Sergeant. 

2. James Rufiis Reid, Ist Lieut., Co. C. 

3. J. D. Wells, 1st Lieut., Co. F. 

4. William Richmond McNeely, IstLieut., 

Co. A. 

John A. Stikeleather, Ensign, Co. A. 
John G. Young, Sergeant-Major. 
Ben Allen Knox, Sergeant, Co. B. 
A. Friedhiem, Corporal, Co. K. 
Henry C. Severs, Private, Co. K. 

Fourth Regiment. 271 

ber James Stinson and Mr. Bagley, the two faithful couriers, who 
were always conspicuous figures in time of battle. 

John G. Young, the Sergeant-major of the regiment, was also 
a well known character in the regiment. He volunteered in 
1863, when about sixteen years of age; was for a time drill-mas- 
ter, having been a cadet; was never sick^ wounded, nor absent 
until the surrender. He asked leave to bring home the flag of 
the Fourth Regiment, but was not allowed to do so. Henry 
Severs was another brave Mecklenburg boy of about the same 
age. He was with General George B. Anderson when he was 
wounded, and assisted in helping that noble hero from the field 
of Sharpsburg. 

Private Augustus Byers, of Company A, was a representa- 
tive Southern man. A man of education and considerable 
means, he chose to serve as a soldier, and was killed near Chan- 
cellorsville, the 19th of May, 1864. He was a splendid man 
and a good soldier. 

Many members of the regiment were transferred and given 
offices in other commands. Among the number were the gallant 
Lieutenant-Colonel, J. McLeod Turner, of the Seventh North 
Carolina, and Major T. J. Brown, of the Forty-second North Caro- 
lina, before mentioned. Colonel H. C. Jones, of the Fifty-seventh 
Regiment, was at one time a member of Company K, though I 
believe this was before the Fourth Regiment was organized. 

Lieutenants Lee, Parker, Stith, Stevens and Thompson, all of 
Company F, made good soldiers and received promotion. 

Lieutenant T. M. C. Davidson, of Company A, was pro- 
moted from the ranks. He was a good soldier. 

Lieutenant Thomas W. Stephenson, of Company C, was a 
fine specimen of a soldier. Always ready for duty, and never 
flinching from danger. The same may be said of J. A. S. Feims- 
ter and S. A. Claywell of the same company. 

Captains Latham and Gallagher, of Company E, were good 
soldiers. The former was retired on account of wounds received 
in battle. The latter took his place in 1863, and served till the 
end of the war. Lieutenants Litchfield and Williamson sustained 

272 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

themselves well as soldiers, and were highly esteemed in the 
regiment. Lieutenant Litchfield was killed in 1864, at or near 
Cold Harbor. 

Captain I. H. Carter, of Company E, was a brave soldier. 
He was killed at Fredricksburg in 1863. Lieutenant Guffy, of 
Company G, was a first-rate man. Lieutenants Smith, Cain, 
Smoot and Jones, of the same company, all stood well. 

Lieutenant Edward Tripp, of Company E, was a brave and 
faithful soldier, who had command of the company for quite a 
while, and was wounded and captured in 1864. 

Lieutenants Kennedy, Summers and Stockton, of Company 
H, were good representative men of Iredell county. Lieuten- 
ant Summers was badly wounded at Chancellorsville while act- 
ing as Adjutant of the regiment, and forced to accept light duty 
during the balance of the war. Weaver, of the same company, 
died a glorious death at Sharpsburg, as has been told, and Stock- 
ton at Gettysburg. 

Lieutenant A. N. Wiseman, of Company K, was a model 
soldier. As Orderly Sergeant of his company he had no superior, 
and as a commissioned officer he was all that could be desired. 
He received a mortal wound at Winchester in 1864. Cap- 
tain C. A. Hunt, of Lexington, was with him in his last 

Captain M. L. Bean, also of Company K, was a true and gal- 
lant officer. He and A. C. Carter, of Company K, volunteered 
to make a bold reconnaissance at Gettysburg to ascertain the 
enemy's position, and saved the regiment from what might have 
been a fatal surprise, such as befell one of our brigades the same 

Lieutenant E. J. Redding, of Company E, a bold and gallant 
youth, fell at the post of duty in the bloody conflict at Seven 

Ben Allen Knox, Sergeant in Company B, was a gallant 
soldier, serving throughout the war with courage and fidelity. 

In looking over the list of officers and men of the grand old 
regiment, the writer is reminded that it would take a volume to 

Fourth ' Eegimbnt. 273 

mention what might be said of hundreds whose names I would be 
happy to mention, who are equally as deserving as those I have 
named. A few have been selected here and there as represen- 
tative men among the others. A list of the privates if it could 
be printed with this sketch would be a memorial of as brave and 
true men as the world has ever known. 

The survivors of the Fourth Regiment will no doubt remem- 
ber three figures that would not be out of place in a complete 
picture of the regiment, and will, therefore, permit me to men- 
tion Colonel Grimes' negro boy, Polk, Captain Carter's man, 
Jim, and the writer's boy, Gus : Polk, the typical mulatto, Gus, 
the ignorant, but loyal African, and Jim, the devoted and 
faithful slave. 


It is a grateful privilege to mention the great kindness bestowed 
upon the members of the Fourth Regiment, as well as upon 
the Confederate soldiers generally, by the people of Virginia 
during the war. Their hospitality and kindness were unceasing 
and almost unbounded. Conspicuous among those with whom 
we came in contact was Mr. George S. Palmer, of Richmond. 
His name is a synonym for all that is generous, kind and 
hospitable. The writer was a partaker of his kindness, and that 
of his noble wife and daughters on many occasions — once when 
sick, and three times when wounded. The writer also remem- 
bers one occasion when there were some eighteen wounded offi- 
cers of the Fourth Regiment in the house of Mr. Palmer. This 
was just after the battle of Seven Pines. He was a man ot 
ample means, his heart and soul were in the cause of the 
South, and it was his delight to spend and be spent for that 

On the 20th of May, 1864, the writer having been wounded 
the day before, was placed in an ambulance with Colonel F. M. 
Parker, of the Thirtieth Regiment, a most gallant and faithful 
soldier, who also had been wounded and was very weak. Cap- 
tain Fred. Philips, since Judge Philips, of Tarboro, had 


274 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

charge of the wagon train, and took the best of care of us as we 
were conveyed towards Richmond with the other wounded men. 
The day was hot and we were parched with fever and thirst; 
but he supplied us from time to time with refreshing draughts 
of buttermilk and ice which the good people of the country gave 
him. It was served in a horse-bucket; but never was sweeter 
or more refreshing draughts served, nor men more grateful than 
we were. 

In one of the iights in the Valley campaign of 1864, private 
McCanless, a gallant member of Company K, was captured by 
a Federal soldier, who was marching him through the woods, 
when they came upon another man of the same company, who 
was separated from his command, and making his way back as 
fast as he could run. "Halt!" shouted the Federalist; but 
instead of halting the man increased his speed. "Halt!! Halt!!!" 
shouted the Union soldier again, and bang went his gun. But 
his aim was bad, and the man escaped. "Now," said McCan- 
less, " you may help yourself; I, too, am going back," and with 
that he departed through the woods, leaving his captor standing 
with his empty gun in his hand, and made his escape. 

On the 19th of May, 1864, as we were preparing to attack the 
enemy's flank and rear. General Ramseur sent Captain Jenkins, 
of the Fourteenth Regiment, to capture what was supposed to 
be a squad of pickets. The Captain divided his squad of sharp- 
shooters in order to make a dash from opposite sides upon an old 
house where the supposed pickets were thought to be. At the 
signal agreed upon the men rushed upon the house, but instead 
of a few pickets a whole regiment of Federals rose up and fired 
upon the Captain's little band. The Captain, of course, beat a 
hasty retreat, and joined the command; and soon the whole 
line was engaged. General Ewell had his horse killed in this 
engagement. It fell on the General's wooden leg, pinning him 
to the ground. G. D. Snuggs, of Company K, and Sergeant 
Barnett, of Company H, assisted in extricating the General from 
his difficulty. As soon as he was relieved he called, out: "Men, 
are we driving them? Are we driving them?" 

FoxTETH Eegiment. 275 

In passing through Lexington, Va., on the 21st of June, 1864, 
General Rodes directed Colonel Wood, of the Fourth Regiment, 
to lead the column with his regimental band playing a funeral 
march as they passed by the grave of Stonewall Jackson. It 
was a very impressive scene as the brave old veterans of so many 
battles filed slowly and sadly by the last resting-place of their 
departed hero. 

On the retreat from Fisher's Hill, the 22d of September, 1864, 
where Ewell's forces were badly demoralized, and the loss of the 
whole command seemed imminent. General Ramseur called on 
his old brigade to hold the enemy in check and protect the 
retreating Confederates. General Cox, who was in command, 
did this in splendid style, held the enemy in check until night, 
and then continued the retreat up the Valley. This retreat 
was made in two lines of battle, parallel with each other, 
some half mile apart, in which order General Ewell moved his 
entire corps all the next day, stopping occasionally to offer bat- 
tle when the enemy approached too near. 

On the 9th of April, General Grimes had been fighting the 
enemy with his division up to the very hour of the surrender, and 
some say until it had actually taken place j and the Fourth and 
Fourteienth Regiments were the last of his division that were 
engaged, so the men of these regiments say. 

At Gettysburg, when we started to make the night attack, 
Colonel Grimes, who could not see very well at night, sent for 
Corporal Friedheim, of Company K, to guide him and be with 
him in that trying ordeal. He knew full well that he could 
trust this man ; for there was no braver or truer soldier in the 
army than A. Friedheim. 

General Grimes told the writer of one of his men who, on 
the 9th, hearing something said about General Lee's surrender, 
came to him and asked if the report was true. "Yes," said the 
General, "it is, I am sorry to say, too true." Whereupon the 
poor fellow burst into tears, and cried out: "Blow, Gabriel, 
blow, I do not want to live another day." 

Another one, a member of Company K, Fourth Eegiment, 

276 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

whose name I cannot remember, set hia gun down at the sur- 
render with a sigh, saying: "Sit there, Betsy, you've made many 
of them bite the dust." 

At Seven Pines the writer was shot through the thigh. While 
lying on the field a Federal soldier came along with his gun. 
As he approached near where the writer lay he covered him with 
his pistol and ordered him to halt, throw down his gun and 
come to him. The soldier obeyed, and was made to assist him 
from the field. In the same battle the writer saw a Confederate 
soldier get into a panic and run with all his might to the rear, 
but recovering his self-possession, he returned to the line as 
i%pidly as he had fled, and went on through the battle; he was never 
known to flinch after this, and was, after going through many bat- 
tles, killed in an act of conspicuous bravery. He did not know 
that' the writer saw him, nor was he ever told that any one saw' 

In the battle of Spottsylvania Court House, on the 12th of 
May, 1864, private Thomas Sprinkle, of Company H, was 
detailed to furnish the men with ammunition during the fight. 
This was a peculiarly dangerous duty at any time, but never 
more so than in this fight, as the approach to the line from the 
rear was through a perfect storm of bullets aimed at the men 
behind the fortifications. But for hours the brave boy with 
ruddy, beardless face, continued to bring the needed supplies, 
but late in the afternoon he failed to reach the line, and was 
never seen again. Walker Anderson, the Ordnance Officer 
of the brigade, was killed the same day. It was at this battle 
that several trees, from twelve to fourteen 'inches in diameter, 
were shot until they fell, cut down with minnie-balls. They 
stood at the angle of the breastworks, and were in full range of 
the enemy's fire from front and both flanks. 

At Gettysburg, as we entered the town after the enemy retired 
from our front, Lieutenant Harney, of the Fourteenth Regiment, 
was carried to the rear mortally wounded. Passing within a few 
feet of the writer, he displayed a Union flag which he had cap- 
tul-ed on the heights, where he had gone with the sharp-shooters. 

Fourth Regiment. 277 

He entreated that the troops would advance and capture the 
heights, as the enemy was in utter confusion and helpless. His 
dying request was that the banner should be sent to President 
Davis. Lieutenant Harney was a splendid soldier, had seen ser- 
vice in the war with Mexico, and was devoted to the cause of 
the South. 

In the heavy skirmish which took place near Spottsylvania 
Court House on the 8th of May, 1864, the regiment advanced upon 
the enemy about sundown and threw them into complete disorder. 
We pushed on until dark, when we were compelled to halt, as we 
could not distinguish friends from foes. Private Heilig, of 
Company K, captured a Federal colonel and brought him out. 
The colonel showed fight, but was induced to submit. Colonel 
Grimes gave Heilig the colonel's pistol as a reward for his cour- 
age. Poor fellow, he was not permitted to enjoy his prize "but 
a little while, as he was killed on the 12th. 

When the enemy surprised and broke the line of General 
Doles on our right on the 10th of May, 1864, Major Hardaway, 
of Alabama, stood his ground, serving one of his guns himself 
until the enemy reached the breastworks. One of them mounted 
the gun the Major was serving, and waved his hat with a 
triumphant shout; but the Major knocked him off with his 
sword and sullenly retired with his face to the foe, until Battle's 
Alabamians and the Fourth North Carolina came to the rescue. 
He went back with the infantry and was the first to reach the 
line, and opened fire on the retreating foe. The writer saw him 
a few minutes later, and his hat and clothes were riddled with 
bullets. He was a grand man. 

A notable experience with the regiment was the march from 
Port E,oyal to Fredericksburg just before the battle in Decem- 
ber, 1862. The weather was very cold, snow was on the ground 
and the roads one continuous slush from six to twelve inches 
deep, and blocked with wagons and artillery. The night was 
pitch-dark, there being neither moon nor stars, and the march 
continued all night long. The men were compelled to remain 
on their feet most of the time, as there were few places to rest 

278 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65 

upon for the mud; sometimes marching a few rods, or a few 
hundred yards, and then waiting fifteen, twenty or thirty minutes 
on account of the blocking of the roads by the stalling of teams 
and wagons in front. 

During the skirmish on the 11th of May, 1864, near Spottsyl- 
vania Court House, Sergeant Houlshouser, of Company K, was 
sitting with his back against a good sized tree, our part of the 
line not being then engaged, whfen a cannon-ball struck the 
opposite side of the tree, killing him instantly by the shock. 

On the 5th of May, 1864, as General Rodes' Division was 
moving in line of battle so near the enemy as at one time to com- 
pel Ramseur's Brigade to take position in rear of the main line 
to avoid exposure to the enemy's fire. General Ramseur re- 
monstrated with General Rodes on account of being placed in 
the rear. General Rodes told him in a jocular way that if he 
" would move those Yankees away from there he could place 
his brigade in line." Whereupon General Ramseur deployed his 
men and made a rush through the woods, firing and yelling, and 
soon cleared the woods of the enemy's sharp-shooters; when he 
put his brigade in position on the left. It should be borne in 
mind, however, that the enemy had all they could attend to in 
another part of the field at that time. 

In the winter of 1863 many of the men had no shoes and 
were suffering much from cold as the troops were on the march. 
General Hill ordered that every man who had no shoes should 
be provided with raw hide moccasins. Some of the men com- 
plied with the order, but soon found they were of no use for when 
the sun came out they became too hard, and when the ground was 
wet they could not keep them on their feet. 

When James Bowers, of Company K, fell at Seven Pines 
with the flag of the regiment in his hand, he said to a comrade: 
"Tell Mr. Bruner (the man with whom he had lived) that I 
died with my face to the enemy." 


The Fourth Regiment was on the right of the brigade at 
Appomattox on the 9th of April, 1865, and was the first in the 

Fourth Regiment. 279 

brigade to stack arms. When this was done General Grimes 
called them to " attention " for the last time, and had them to 
file past him in order that he might shake hands with each man, 
and as he did so, with streaming eyes and faltering voice, he 
said: "Go home, boys, and act like men, as you have always 
done during the war." 


I have endeavored to give a faithful sketch of this grand body 
of men; but I am painfully aware of having failed to do the 
subject justice. Thirty-five years of labor and toil have effaced 
many important incidents from a mind constantly crowded with 
the cares and duties of official and ministerial life. Besides, I 
have been compelled to write in the midst of many pressing cares 
and labors, and to procure my facts from other sources of infor- 
mation than my own, not having kept a record of the events as 
they occurred. And here I wish to acknowledge my deep indebt- 
edness to Captain John A. Stikeleather, the Rev. W. A. Wood, 
D. D., and Mr. Pulaski Cowper in the letters of General Grimes, 
edited by him ; to Mr. Nathanal Raymer, a member of the band 
of the Fourth Regiment, who sent me his letters written during 
the war under the signature of "Nat," in The Statesville Ameri- 
can; for the notes kept by Dr. Shinn, of Company B, and the 
note-book of Mr. E. B. Stinson of the band of the Fourth 
Regiment. Also, for many items of interest by Mr. G. D. 
Snuggs, a gallant member of the Fourth Regiment, and a 
splendid member of the corps of sharp-shooters. And last, but 
by no means least, for very valuable information furnished by 
Captain W. C. Coughenour, Dr. J. F. Shaffner and Captain M. 
L. Bean. I have also received valuable items from Captain H. 
M. Warren and Sergeant-major John Graham Young, R. O. 
Leinster, Dr. J. C. Hadley, Mr. Henry C. Severs, Captain S. A. 
Kelley, Major Stansill and others, for all of which I am very 

In looking over the history of the Fourth Regiment the writer 
is reminded of many facts that throw light upon the history and 
character of the organization. A marked characteristic of our men 

280 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

was their sobriety and piety. The writer does not recall a half dozen 
instances of drunkenness in the regiment during the war, and 
but few of gross profanity or immorality. They were a pious and 
orderly set of men. The camps often resounded with hymns and 
songs. Among the latter "Annie Laurie " was a great favorite; also 
" Dixie," and " My Old Cabin Home." Prayers were conducted in 
many of the tents, and religious services were well attended. Pro- 
fanity amongst the officers was seldom heard. Colonel Anderson's 
example and iniluence in this respect was very marked ; also 
that of Lieutenant-Colonel Young, and Major Grimes, though 
of a quick and fiery temper, was careful never to take the 
Holy Name in vain. They were all God-fearing men, and not 
given to loose talking nor drink. The writer never heard any 
conversation at headquarters that would have offended the most 
modest and religious feelings. The company officers were gener- 
ally of high moral character, and many of them were Chris- 
tian men whose influence was felt among their rank and file. In 
fact they only represented the men of the ranks, from whence 
they had been taken. E. A. Osborne. 

Charlotte, N. C, 

April 9, 1900. 


1. Duncan K. McRae, Colonel. 3. T. M. Garrett, Colonel, 

2. Jolin W. Lea, Colonel. 4. P. J, Sinclair, Lieut.-Colonel. 

5. John C. Badham, Lieut.-Colonel. 



This was oue of the tea regiments organized under the act of 
the General, Assembly of North Carolina, May 8th, 1861, en- 
titled: "An Act to Eaise Ten Thousand State Troops"; and it 
is to be distinguished from the Fifth Volunteers, afterwards 
called the Fifteenth North Carolina Regiment. 

It was formed in camp of instruction at Halifax in July, 1861, 
by the assignment to it of the following named field officers: 

Duncan K. MacRae, Colonel; Joseph P. Jones, Lieutenant- 
Colonel; John C. Badham, Major; Lieutenant Isaac A. Jones, 
of Company H, Acting Adjutant; Captain John Kirkland, 
Acting Quartermaster; Captain James M. Jones, Acting Com- 
missary-Sergeant; Dr. James A. MacRae, Surgeon; Dr. John 
K. Ruffin, Assistant Surgeon. 

It was composed of: 

Company A, from Cumberland, Captain P. J. Sinclair. 
Company B, from Gates, Captain W. J. Hill. 
Company C, from Johnston, Captain E. D. Sneed. 
Company D, from Craven, Captain Jacob Brookfield. 
Company E, from Rowan, Captain Samuel Reaves. 
Company F, from Bertie, Captain Thomas M. Garrett. 
Company G, from Wilson, Captain N. A. H. Goddin. 
Company H, from Gates, Captain S. B. Douge. 
Company I, from Caswell, Captain John W. Lea. 
Company K, from Rowan, Captain Ham. C Jones. 

While these companies are stated to be from certain counties, 
they were enlisted in large numbers from other counties; for 
instance, about one hundred and fifty men of this regiment were 

282 " North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

from Chatham; and later, the depleted ranks were filled with 
conscripts from different parts of the State. 

The regiment reached Manassas on July 19th, 1861, and was 
attached to the brigade of General Longstreet, and participated 
in the battle of the 21st, its position being on the extreme right; 
it was not engaged in the most serious conflict of that day, 
although being exposed to the enemy's fire, it lost several men. 
It was in the advance upon the retreat of the Federal army, 
which it assisted in driving into Washington. 

During the winter of 1861-62, having been .assigned to 
Early's Brigade, it was stationed at Union Mills on the Orange 
& Alexandria Eailroad, engaged in outpost and picket duty in 
front of the Confederate lines. At one time it held position on 
Mason Hill in sight of the Capitol at Washington, and was daily 
engaged with the enemy's skirmishers. In the intervals of its 
outpost duty it was thoroughly drilled in preparation for the 
arduous work in store for it in the near future. 

During this winter, Lieutenant-Colonel Jones, having been 
assigned to other duty, resigned his position in the regiment; 
Major John C. Badham was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel and 
Captain Peter J. Sinclair, of Company A, was promoted to 
Major; Lieutenant James C. MacRae, of Company D, was made 
Adjutant; Captains Sneed and Goddin resigned and Lieutenants 
Mullins and Thompson were made Captains in their stead of 
Companies C and G. Dr. MacRae resigned and Dr. Ruffin was 
transferred to another command, and Dr. Wingfield became 
Surgeon of the regiment. 

On the change of front to meet the advance of McCIellan 
upon Richmond, Early's Brigade was among the first to reach 
General Magruder on the Peninsular. It w^s immediately put 
in position in the defensive works near Yorktown, and remained 
in the trenches, constantly on duty, until the evacuation of York- 
town on May 3, 1862, being the last of the Confederate troops 
to leave the works. Passing from the rearguard, it marched up 
the Williamsburg road, and on the night of May 4, 1862, 
bivouacked in the field beyond Williamsburg, under orders to 

Fifth Regiment. 283 

take up its line of march at daybreak in the direction of the 

Its part in the affair at Williamsburg deserves more than 
casual mention. Owing to the determined pressure of the 
Federals upon the rearguard of the Confederates, Early's Brigade 
was counter-marched into Williamsburg, where it rested in the 
campus of old William and Mary College during the morning, 
awaiting orders. The battle on the right of the Confederates, 
below Williamsburg, was very severe during the day, and the 
enemy was not only held in check but driven back with great 
slaughter. In the afternoon it was found that the Federal troops 
had taken possession of an old abandoned redoubt on the extreme 
left, and somewhat in advance of the other works, which had 
been erected for the defense of Williamsburg, and was seriously 
annoying our troops by an enfilading fire from its batteries. 
Early's and Rodes' Brigades, under command of Major-General 
D. H. Hill, were sent to the left of the Confederate line with 
orders to retake this redoubt and silence its batteries. Under the 
immediate direction of General Hill, four regiments of Early's 
Brigade were marched to the left and disencumbered of all 
impedimenta in the open ground, which was separated from this 
redoubt by thick woods. Of the four regiments to compose the 
attacking party the Twenty-fourth Virginia, Colonel Terry, 
led by General Early in person, was on the left and covered by 
woods, immediately opposite the redoubt. The Fifth North 
Carolina was on the right and opposite an open field about eight 
hundred yards from the redoubt to be attacked. At the word of 
command the brigade in line of battle passed into the intervening 
woods, from which this regiment soon emerged in a field of heavy 
plowed ground, in full view of the enemy, who immediately 
opened upon it with artillery. In the face of apparent destruc- 
tion, but in obedience to direct orders from the Major-General 
commanding, this regiment began the advance. It was at once 
necessary to change front forward on the left company, and the 
movement was made with precision under a heavy artillery fire. 
On account of the continued advance of the left company and 

284 North Caeolina Tkoops, 1861-'65. 

the heavy condition of the soil the right of the line, though at 
a double-quick, was delayed in reaching its alignment; the left 
companies were halted to give time for the balance of the regi- 
ment to reach the line, when the whole command halted, dressed 
upon the left, and at the word of command pressed forward to 
the attack, marching as on dress-parade, without firing a gun. 
In front of the redoubt were five regiments of infantry, sup- 
porting a battery of ten pieces of artillery, with clouds of 
skirmishers in their advance. The charge of the Fifth North 
Carolina on this occasion has rarely been surpassed in the history 
of war for its heroism and gallantry. Pressing on from the first 
in the face of the battery, entering into the plunging fire of the 
infantry, wading into a storm of balls, which first struck the 
men in the feet and rose upon their nearer approach, it steadily 
pressed on. The Twenty-fourth Virginia had now emerged 
from the woods at a point on the left and nearer the enemy, 
driving the skirmishers before it. From the thickness of the 
woods in their front, the center regiments not having come up, 
the Fifth Regiment obliqued to the left to touch its comrade, 
the Twenty-fourth Virginia, when all pressed forward, driving 
the enemy before them. Not until within close range was the 
command "Commence firing" given, when it began to fire and 
load as it advanced. The enemy's skirmishers retired, the battery 
retreated into the redoubt, with the infantry behind it, and 
opened fire again from the intrenchments. 

Instances of individual heroism would fill a volume. The 
members of the color-guard were shot down one by one, and as 
each man fell the battle flag was passed to the successor. When 
the last sergeant fell. Captain Benjamin Robinson, of Company 
A, took it and bore it at the head of his company until the staff 
was shot to pieces. The officers and men were falling rapidly 
under the withering fire of grape and canister and musketry. 
Lieutenant-Colonel Badham was shot in the forehead and fell 
dead ; Major Sinclair's horse was killed and he was disabled ; 
Captain Mullins, of Company C, received his mortal wound and 
fell upon the field; Captains Garrett and Lea and Jones were 

Fifth Regiment. 285 

all shot down, as were many of the subalterns, among them 
Lieutenant Thomas Snow, of Halifax (who was killed far in 
advance of his company, cheering on his men); Lieutenants 
Boswell, of Company A; Clark, of Company G; Hays of Com- 
pany F. 

In fifty yards of the redoubt this regiment, or what was left 
of it, reached a small fence and ditch with a slight embankment 
next to the enemy. Here it took cover, continuing to fire, the 
Twenty-fourth Virginia on its left. Victory was in its grasp, 
the enemy had been driven to his intrenchment; one fresh regi- 
ment was all that was needed to go over the works, but none 
ever came; instead thereof an order to retreat. Too few in 
number to continue the attack (at the beginning of the fight 
these two regiments did not number a thousand men), in obedi- 
ence to orders, the regiment retired to the cover of the woods on 
its left, leaving a large majority of the officers and men dead 
and wounded on the field. 

Lieutenant-Colonel Badham was one of the first men of the 
State, a lawyer by profession and a political leader. Had he 
lived he would have had all its honors. 

It would extend this sketch too much to mention the gallant 
boys who here, at the threshold of the conflict, laid down their 
lives. Four hundred and fifteen men were counted as they 
went into action ; seventy-five answered to the roll-call in the 
morning, and nearly all of the missing were either killed or 
wounded. General Hancock, who commanded the Federals in 
their front, said of the Fifth North Carolina and Twenty-fourth 
Virginia: "They should have immortality inscribed on their 

Next morning the Confederate army resumed its march, with- 
out further opposition, to the Chickahominy, where was witnessed 
an event never before known in war — the election of officers for 
all the volunteer regiments from North Carolina and a conse- 
quent reorganization, in face of the enemy. 

General Early having been seriously wounded while leading 
this regiment, the command of the brigade devolved upon Colo- 

286 North uaeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

nel MacRae, whose feeble physical frame soon succumbed to 
severe illness. General, Samuel Garland took command, Major 
Sinclair, now promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel, commanding the 
regiment. The depleted ranks soon began to fill up with con- 
valescents returned from the hospitals, for there had been much 
sickness engendered by the exposure in the trenches at York- 
town. By the battle at Seven Pines there were more than two 
hundred men for duty. Lieutenant MacRae had then been pro- 
moted to Captain and Acting Adjutant-General, and Lieutenant 
F. J. Haywood became Adjutant. In this battle Colonel Mac- 
Rae endeavored to take command, but from sheer weakness was 
unable to do so. Under Lieutenant-Colonel Sinclair the regi- 
ment, with others of Garland's Brigade and Hill's Division, 
drove the enemy from its position, but again at serious loss in 
officers and men. One of the killed was Lieutenant Isaac A. 
Jones, of Company H, who for a time acted as Ajutant. Young, 
enthusiastic, brave, he took his place among the immortals in 
the hour of victory. 

Through all the series of battles around Richmond this regi- 
ment followed the fortunes of Garland's Brigade, with but a 
handful left at Malvern Hill. During that very brilliant series 
of movements, ending in the utter defeat of Pope by Jackson at 
Second Manassas, the division of D. H. Hill remained near 
Richmond for its protection, in which time it again replenished 
its ranks with the return of those who had recovered from their 
wounds and sickness and the assignment of conscripts, many of 
whom, though late in joining the army, were first-rate material 
and made good soldiers. Lieutenant F. J. Haywood was made 
Ordnance Officer on General Garland's staff. 

In September, 1862, the regiment marched into Maryland, 
stood with Hill in that grand stand at South Mountain which 
saved the army, divided as it was in the face of vastly superior 
forces, the other half assigned to capture Harper's Ferry, and re- 
combined to beat double its number at Sharpsburg. In these 
magnificent battles it lost heavily again. Brave Garland fell. Col- 
onel MacRae taking command, was himself disabled and soon after 

Fifth Regiment. 287 

compelled by feeble health to leave the army. General Iverson be- 
came brigade commander, and Captain Thomas M. Garrett suc- 
ceeded to the colonelcy. The resignation of Lieutenant-Colonel 
Sinclair soon followed; Captain John W. Lea was made Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel and Captain W. J. Hill Major; Lieutenant Fab. J. 
Haywood, who had served upon the staff of General Garland, 
became again Adjutant of the regiment. It was now attached to 
Bodes' Division, Ewell's Corps, Array of Northern Virginia. 

Returning to Virginia, there was to this regiment and brigade 
a season of comparative rest in the vicinity of Winchester, and 
later on the Opequon, but this period of inactivity was short, 
for in December, 1862, after rapid marching, it reached its place 
in front of Fredericksburg to meet the advance of Hooker. 
Though engaged in the battle of Fredericksburg, its losses were 
small, the regiment and brigade not being greatly exposed. But 
at Chancellorsville it bore a distinguished part, losing heavily 
again in officers and men. All of its field oflBcers were wounded, 
and the command of the regiment devolved upon that brave and 
capable officer. Captain Speight B. West, under whom it served 
through the campaign which led to Gettysburg, where it suf- 
fered severely on the first day's fight, its four captains present — 
West, Robinson, Taylor and Jordan — all being wounded, though 
two of them, Robinson and Jordan, reported for duty again the 
next day. It lay, unable to strike a blow, under a tremendous 
fire of artillery and sharp-shooters, during the fatal battle of the 
third day at Gettysburg. Its loss at Gettysburg is reported in 
the "Records of the Rebellion" at thirty-one killed and one 
hundred and twelve wounded. The list of casualties sent with 
General Iverson's report cannot be found. A large majority of 
the officers were killed or wounded. Adjutant Haywood was 
left upon the field severely wounded. From Gettysburg, Iver- 
son's Brigade proceeded by forced march to Hagerstown, where 
it had a brilliant encounter with the enemy's cavalry, driving 
them out of the town. On the return to Virginia it was engag- 
ed in all those maneuvers on the Rapidan and Rappahannock 
which occupied the fall of 1863. 

288 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

In October, at Bristoe Station, under Lieutenant-Colonel Lea, 
Colonel Garrett commanding the brigade, it crossed Raccoon 
Ford and charged the enemy's battery near Stevensburg, driving 
him across the Rapidan. In the report of this engagement, 
Captain T. N. Jordan, of Company F; Lieutenant C. E. C. Rid- 
dick, commanding Company B, and Corporal A. Overton, of 
Company F, are mentioned as having exhibited great courage 
and daring. Colonel Garrett's good conduct was especially 
mentioned by General Fitzhugh Lee. 

At Mine Run, in November, Captain Benjamin Robinson, 
Company A, with two corps of sharp-shooters, about seventy- 
five strong, drove in the One Hundred and Fifteenth Massa- 
chusetts Regiment, killing and capturing a number of them, 
including the lieutenant-colonel. Captain Robinson was specially 
mentioned by General Johnson and General Rodes, and recom- 
mended for promotion. 

The regiment remained in winter quarters on the Rapidan 
during the winter, and in the early spring was sent to Taylors- 
ville, a station on the Richmond, Fredericksburg & Potomac 
Railroad, about twenty miles from Richmond, to rest and 
recuperate ; but it went to the front at the opening of the cam- 
paign in the early days of May, 1864, with full ranks, its field 
officers all present, and the spirits of the veteran soldiers good. 
By forced marches (going in one day thirty-three miles) it 
went from Taylorsville to the Wilderness, reaching the latter on 
the afternoon of the last day of the battle, and immediately 
went into action as a part of the force with which General Gor- 
don turned the right flank of the Federal army. This engage- 
ment first brought Gordon before the public eye as a soldier of 
eminent capacity. The regiment greatly distinguished itself in 
this fight and in the quickly following battle of Spottsylvania. 
On the 10th of May the brigade was sent out on a reconnaissance 
on the right of the army, where it became engaged with Burn- 
side's Corps, and after a stubborn fight was compelled to retire. 
In this engagement Captain Robinson and also Captain Davis 
were both seriously wounded. On the 11th, with Daniel's 


1. Eayner Erookfleld, Captain, Co. C. 3. Jacob Brookfleld, Captain, Co. D. 

2. L. M. Davis, Captain, Co. K. 4. F. J. Haywood, Jr., Adjutant. 

5. Jos. G. Hayes, 1st Lieut., Co. F. 

Fifth Eegiment. 289 

Brigade, it recaptured a battery which had been taken by a 
division of Federals and drove back the Federal troops with 
great slaughter. In this fight there was a good deal of bayonet 
fighting, and Colonel Garrett was conspicuous for his bravery. 
On the 12th came the great battle of Spottsylvania. In the 
early morning, before daylight, the brigade was awakened by 
sharp firiug and, hurrying to the front, found that the entire 
division of General Edward Johnson had been captured, and 
that the brigade was expected to fill the gap and arrest the 
onward assault of the enemy, which was in great force, being 
the corps of General Hancock. This was in the "angle" or 
" horse-shoe," as it has been called from its shape, a place made 
memorable by the fierceness of the conflict which raged there 
all the day. Into the breach the brigade went, the morning fog 
being so thick that at ten paces one could not distinguish friend 
from foe, and was subjected to an enfilading fire from right and 
left. In less than fifteen minutes after going into action five 
officers were killed, including Colonel Garrett, shot through the 
head, and Lieutenant Edward Smedes, a gallant young officer 
from Raleigh. Colonel Garrett was a gallant soldier and had 
won for himself an enviable reputation for conspicuous personal 
courage and capacity for commanding troops. Many others 
were killed and many captured, among the latter being Lieu- 
tenant Anderson, of Fayetteville, and Sergeant-major Busbee, 
of Raleigh. During the day's battle the regiment bore a con- 
spicuous part and maintained its reputation as the "Bloody 
Fifth." It carried into the fight about four hundred and fifty, 
and at the evening roll-call only forty-two answered. It is said 
that in this battle and in the "horse-shoe" the fiercest musketry 
fighting of the war occurred. In the War Department at Wash- 
ington, among the relics, is a section of the trunk of a whiteoak 
tree which was cut down in this fight at the "angle" by minie- 
balls alone. 

Lieutenant-Colonel John W. Lea now became Colonel of the 
Fifth. Major Hill was made Lieutenant-Colonel, and Captain 
J. M. Taylor acting as Major, and as part of Johnston's Brigade, 

290 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Ramseur's and then Pegram's Division, Ewell's Corps, it went 
to the Valley to its old commander. Early, made the brilliant 
advance movement across the Potomac, was with Gordon when 
he drove Lew Wallace from Monocacy into Baltimore, and for a 
second time stood in sight of the Capitol at Washington; but 
closer approach was not written in the book of Fate, and Early 
turned back into Virginia. Then began the series of reverses, cul- 
minating at Fisher's Hill, which called forth all the manhood of 
Johnston and his North Carolinians, whose "thin gray line," as 
the rearguard of Early's army, held Sheridan in check. 

In November, 1864, Colonel Lea was in command of the 
brigade and Captain Edward M. Duguid of the regiment. The 
winter of 1864-'65 was spent on the banks of the Staunton 
River, the regiment being scattered along that stream to guard 
the ferries in order to prevent the passage of deserters from Lee's 
army. Toward the last of March it was called back to its place 
at the front, and took position in the trenches at Petersburg, its 
officers and men living in holes in the ground just in rear of the 
trenches which they were guarding. There, in repelling attacks 
and in sorties from the works, it filled the full measure of its 
duty. ■ In the battle of Fort Steadman it bore a gallant part. 
When Petersburg was evacuated the regiment constituted part 
of the rearguard, and on that sad retreating march from Peters- 
burg to Appomattox, when unceasing fighting by day and hurried 
marching by night fell to the lot of those brave men who consti- 
tuted the shattered remnant of the Army of Northern Virginia, it 
bore its full share of the conflicts and held its honorable record 
to the bitter end. Examples of sublime personal courage were 
of daily occurrence, notable among them being Lieutenant Wal- 
ter R. Moore, Jr., commanding the sharp-shooters, who was 
killed in a skirmish near the town of Farmville. At Appo- 
mattox it marched through the little town under the fire of a 
Federal battery and took its place in line of battle, formed 
beyond the town, to charge the Federal batteries which were 
opening the battle to the left and front. Awaiting the order to 
advance, the firing suddenly ceased and down the road came a 

Fifth Regiment. 291 

white flag in charge of a Federal oflBcer, soon known to be Gen- 
eral Custer. The Army of Northern Virginia had surrendered ! 

The history of the Fifth North Carolina Regiment is the 
history of the Army of Northern Virginia. It joined this 
army at First Manassas and nev^er left it until "bugles sang 
truce" and the last charge was arrested at Appomattox, April 
9th, 1865. Its history is written in the blood of its officers and 
men, the greater part of whom sleep beneath the soil of Virginia, 
Maryland and Pennsylvania. Among all the heroic commands 
forming the army under Lee, no regiment has a more honorable 
record, and at the end, amid the Appomattox hills, a few worn 
men, doing their duty to the last, were all that was left of the 
old Fifth North Carolina, the regiment which had so early earned 
and so long maintained a title to immortality. 

Here are the names of those who laid down their arms with 
Lee: John W. Lea, Colonel, commanding the brigade; J. M. 
Taylor, Captain Company G, commanding the regiment; George 
T. Parker, Captain Company H; M. T. Hunt, First Lieuten- 
ant Company E; James W. Lea, Second Lieutenant Company 
I ; J. N. Pearson, Surgeon ; H. W. Williams, Assistant Surgeon ; 
Sergeant-major C. M. Busbee, Musician J. J. Johnston. 

Company A — Privates Daniel Albertini, David Ayres, Abram 
Holder, Jesse Johnston, Retus Jones, William Sanders, Andrew 

Company B — Sergeant Henry Clay Williams, Private Wil- 
liam Smith. 

Company C — Sergeant Jesse K. Whitley, Corporal K. J. 
Ballard, Privates J. W. Barber, Augustus Corbit, Nasoow 
Creech, Josiah Dean, Jonas Faulk, J. B. Honeycutt (Hunnicutt), 
J. W. Hines, J. A. Lee, Monroe Lee, Whitley Messer, Abram 
O'Neal, Ransom Penny, Thomas H. Sasser, W. H. Smith, W. 
R. Strickland, Samuel Strickland. 

Company D — First Sergeant R. L. Willis, Carporal J. R. 
Benson, Corporal Robert Johnston, Privates J. A. Douglas, 
William Young, M. A. Kifenic, J. W. Guilford. 

Company E — Sergeant W. J. Bond, Corporal G. W. Long, 

292 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Corporal John Soott, Privates John Barringer, E. D. Council, 
Stephen Daves, Jacob Hartman, Benjamin Herndon, D. A. 
Holt, J. W McCenney, W. L. Parker, Frank Parnell, Jacob 
Pense, William Williams. 

Company F — Privates W. H. Eady, Preston Lane, Thomas 
Perry, J. C. Treece. 

Company G — Privates W. J. Barringer, A. T. Davis, J. T. 
Lamb, Luther Lentz, J. T. Manning, P. J. Pless, W. A. Wil- 

Company H — Privates John D. Brice, Elbert Cross, James 
D. Johnson, Tobias Lentz, Nathan Morgan, S. R. Starns, Isaac 

Company I — Sergeant H. C. Hubbard, Privates Joseph 
Beaver, A. G. Cash, Absolom Cress, D. W. Leach, Frank Julian. 

James C. MacRab, 

Raleigh, N. C, C. M. BuSBEE. 

April 9, 1900. 


1. Charles F. FlBlier, Colonel. 4. R. P. Webb, Colonel 

I' T..^o'^Zt^^"'Z\ , '■ Samuel McDowell Tate, Lieut-Colonel. 

3. IsaaeErwm Avery, Colonel. 6. Alphonso C. Avery, Captain, Co. E. 

7. C. M. Mobane, 1st Lieut, antl Adjt. 


By captain NEILL W. RAY. 

When the country was passing through the throes of the early 
part of 1861 the writer of this sketch was a cadet at the North 
Carolina Military Institute at Charlotte, N. C. It was a time 
of great excitement — stirring events of great import were fol- 
lowing each other in rapid succession, and every mail was anx- 
iously waited for. State after State was seceding from the 
Union. There was talk in the U. S. Congress of coercing, of 
subjugating, and, if necessary, exterminating the seceders. A war- 
cloud was looming up on the horizon ; military companies were 
organizing; an army had been gathered at Charleston; all eyes were 
turned toward Fort Sumter. The cadets partook of the general 
excitement, and as the operations in and around Charleston became 
more and more serious they became restive. Our Superintendent, 
Major (afterwards General) D. H. Hill, went down there, and 
when, after a few days' stay, he returned to the Institute, the 
whole corps assembled to hear him tell what he had seen and 
heard. He gave a full account of what was being done by 
General Beauregard and his Confederates, of their plans for 
preventing the re-inforcement of Sumter, and for capturing it, 
by bombardment, if necessary. Several of the cadets expressed 
a desire to go at once to the seat of war, for fear, as they said, 
Sumter would be taken and the war be over before they could 
have a chance to see anything of it. To them Major Hill said, 
in a very serious manner : " Young gentlemen, if there be one 
hostile gun fired at Sumter, we will all see enough of it before 
the war is over." Prophetic words ! Soon thereafter that gun 
was fired, and its booming and the crashing caused by its shot 
echoed and re-echoed far and wide. 

294 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

The people of North Carolina had appeared to hesitate about 
withdrawing from the Union, but it was not because of their 
indifference to the doctrine of "State Rights" and "community 
independence." In the matter of secession they showed the 
same conservatism that characterized their deliberations whilst 
considering the Constitution before agreeing to become one of 
the United States. They cherished a hope for a pacific settle- 
ment of the questions then disturbing the country. When all 
overtures for peace had failed. Fort Sumter was bombarded 
and taken, and thereupon, the President of the United States 
called for troops to put down the rebellion — to coerce, to subju- 
gate an independent State — then all the people, with few excep- 
tions, manifested their willingness to resist any such attempt. 
North Carolina took her place promptly on the side of consti- 
tutional rights and civil liberty, and most nobly did she main- 
tain and hold her position to the bitter end. 

The ofBcers and teachers of the Institute, being military men, 
promptly offered their services to their State. It was soon 
apparent that the school could not be continued. Most of the 
cadets went to their homes in their own States to volunteer. 

Colonel Charles F. Fisher, then President of the North Caro- 
lina Railroad, in pursuance of his purpose to raise a regiment, 
brought a number of men from along the North Carolina Rail- 
road and Western North Carolina Railroad and quartered them 
in that part of the barracks that had been vacated, and he asked 
that those cadets who were still remaining should drill his men. 
They willingly did so, and some of them were offered positions 
in the regiment. In that way the writer became a member of 
Fisher's Regiment. It was soon decided that a better place for 
the camp of instruction would be Company Shops. So all were 
carried down there, and the work of organization and instruction 
was carried on as rapidly as practicable. The camp was in an 
old field along the railroad, just east of the shops. It is now a 
part of the town of Burlington. Nearly every day there were 
train loads of troops passing from the Southern States "on to 

Sixth Regiment. 295 

Virginia." Their clieers were greeted with hearty responses by 
our men. 

The few pages to which this sketch must be compressed will 
not admit details as to the organization of the diiferent companies. 
For a roll of the officers and men at the organization, and for 
subsequent changes by resignations, promotions, deaths and trans- 
fers, reference must be had to the "Roster of North Carolina 
Troops," heretofore published by authority, from which, imper- 
fect though it be, it would be necessary to copy in order to give 
names. For casualties in battle, deaths from wounds and disease, 
killed and captured, reference must be had to the muster-rolls, 
morning reports and other records on file in the proper depart- 
ment, or at Washington, where the " Records of the Rebellion " are 
being compiled — access to which is to me at present impracticable. 
What is called for, as I understand it, is a short summary of the 
part performed in the Confederate war by each of the seventy- 
five regiments, eleven battalions and nine independent batteries 
of North Carolina Troops — so short a history of each that all 
can be published in two or three volumes of convenient size. 

Suffice it then to say, as to the organization, that the Sixth 
North Carolina State Troops was duly organized on the 16th 
May, 1861, at Company Shops, with C. F. Fisher as Colonel, 
W. T. Dortch as Lieutenant-Colonel, and C. E. Lightfoot as 
Major. When the regiment was about to leave for Virginia, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Dortch, on the death of Governor Ellis, 
resigned by reason of his office in the Legislature. Lightfoot 
was made Lieutenant-Colonel and Captain Webb, "of Company 
B, was made Major. 

CoMPAXY A was first commanded by Captain R. M. McKin- 
ney, who had been one of the Professors at the North Carolina 
Military Institute. Before the regiment was fully organized he 
was made Colonel of the Fifteenth Regiment and S. S. Kirkland 
was made Captain. 

Company B, Captain R. F. Webb; then Captain W. K. 
Parrish. The men were mostly from Orange county. 

Company C, Captain W. G. Freeland, from Orange county. 

296 North Carolina Troops, ]861-'65. 

Company T>, Captain S. McD. Tate. The men were mostly 
from Bnrke county, some from Catawba and McDowell. 

Company E, Captain T. E. Avery, with men from Burke, 
McDowell, Mitc^hell and Yancey counties. 

(Company F, from Alamance, Captain J. W. Wilson. 

Company G, from liowan, C-aptain J. A. Craige. 

Company H, from Caswell, Captain A. A. Mitchell. 

Company I, from Wake and Chatham, Captain R. W. York. 

Company K, from Alamance, Captain J. W. Lea. 

iVfter the first organization many changes were made, and, 
from time to time during the war, a great many recruits were 
enlisted from many other counties and assigned to the diiferent 
companies; and it is su])posed that, from first to last, there were 
perhaps as many as two thousand men that belonged h) the regi- 
ment. The men were all mustered in for the war, and this 
regiment was organized as one of the ten regiments called for to 
serve during the war, and was always known as the Sixth North 
Carolina State Troops. 

When the regiment was reported as ready for service a day 
was fixed for our departure for the seat of war. On the appointed 
day a great many people from the surrounding counties came 
in to bid good-bye to their sons, their brothers, their fathers, 
their husbands. It was a sad day — I will not attempt to recall 
or to describe its scenes. The Southern soldier volunteer's fare- 
well ! — no artist can picture it. But, trying as it was to bid 
farewell undfir such circumstances, yet not one of the thousand 
flinched. When the roll-call was sounded and the command 
"Fall in" was given the tears were brushed from their eyes; 
they took their places in the line, and as their uames were called 
each one firmly answered "Here!" Here, ready to leave home 
and dear ones — ready to do, to dare, to suffer, and, if need be, 
to die, in defense of the rights which, by the Constitution^ 
belong to me and my fellow-citizens, and to my State, and the 
States that are confederated with her — ready to resist, and, if 
possible, drive back the armed invasion being made by troops 

Sixth Regdiest. 297 

from Northern States, arrogating to themselves that they are 
"the United States"; forgetting that by the terms of the laws 
and ordinances by which they came into and adopted the Cons- 
titution of the United States their States had no right to attempt 
the coercion or subjugation of any other States. 

With such convictions and such patriotic motives, the men of 
the Sixth Regiment North Carolina Troops were banded 
together; and assured of the justness of thfir cause, confiding in 
their leaders, and with well-grounded hopes of success, started 
in for the war. Taking the cars at Company Shops, we were 
carried to Raleigh and stopped there for a few days, during 
which we were called on to act as escort at the funeral of Gov- 
ernor Ellis. Leaving Raleigh, we were carried by way of Wel- 
don to Petersburg and then to Richmond. Vie stopped there 
for a day, awaiting transportation, camping at the old Fair 
Ground. President Davis reviewed the regiment, making a 
short speech to us. From Richmond we were carried, by Gor- 
donsville, to Manassas, and thence by way of the Manassas Gap 
Railroad to Strasburg; from which point we marched hurriedly 
to Winchester. Halting for a short while in the streets of Win- 
chester, we heard all sorts of rumors as to the expected attack 
by the enemy. 

Here our men first experienced that kind, patriotic hospitality 
which made famous the noble women of the army-stricken sec- 
tions of our country. As the two armies, for four years, swayed 
back and forth, leaving them within the lines of first one and 
then the other of the contending armies, they were always 
prompt and willing to help fill the haversack or even the canteen 
of the Confederate soldier, after their homes were so devastated 
that they could furnish nothing but cold water. 

The regiment was assigned to General Bee's Brigade, and we 
were soon hurried out and given a place on the extreme left of 
the line of battle which General Johnston had formed to meet 
the expected attack from the enemy. This looked more like 
war than anything we had seen. Every trooper that came in 
from the front was anxiously watched, but no enemy came. 

2: North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

On the 18th of July the line was broken and we were marched 
back through Winchester, and then eastward. General Beaure- 
gard's army at Manassas was threatened, and we were marching 
to his relief. Wading the Shenandoah, we hurried right along 
up the mountain at Ashby's Gap. On the 19th, General Bee 
complained of the straggling, but we were urged forward by 
what we then thought was a forced march — later in the war we 
would not have thought it unusual. During the night of the 
19th our regiment was halted at a station on the Manassas Gap 
Railroad. On account of some delay in getting cars, it was late 
in the evening of the 20th that we were counted into box-cars — 
so many on top and so many inside. There were ugly rumors 
as to obstructions placed on the track, evidently intended to 
impede our progress. With such rumors, with a train of box- 
cars full of sleepy, tired men, inside and on top, in the night, 
and through a mountainous country, it was a dangerous ride. 
We safely reached Manassas Junction on the morning of the 
21st. Disembarking there, we could hear the firing of guns — 
the battle had begun — and we were marched off hurriedly in the 
direction of the firing. As we neared the battlefield we could 
hear the rattling musketry and exploding shells. We began to 
meet wounded men — we saw blood — the war was a reality. 
Some of the wounded were badly hurt, whilst others had slight 
wounds, about the hands for instance, and some of our men 
were so unsoldierly as to envy those who had escaped with only 
such slight wounds as would give them a furlough. We were 
led on, avoiding exposed places so as to keep out of sight of 
the enemy, until we were brought up in front of what is known 
as the " Henry House," near which a battery of artillery was 
posted and throwing its deadly missiles into the Confederate 
lines. This was Rickett's Battery. It was but a short time — 
it seemed only a few minutes — before these guns were silencQ,d 
and captured. But in those few minutes Colonel Fisher and 
many others had been killed. The regiment had received its 
baptism of blood. The enemy, however, was still extending 
their right beyond our left. It was a critical time. On this 

Sixth Regiment. 299 

ridge or plateau, on which the "Henry House" stood, was the 
hardest fighting of the day. Here it was that General Bee, a 
short while before he was killed, bravely calling on his men to 
stand firm against the heavy columns that were coming against 
them, pointed down the line to General Jackson, saying: "Look 
at Jackson, he stands like a stone wall ! " — words that will never 
die. On this ridge, the turning point of the first battle of 
Manassas Plains, Generals Jackson and Hampton were wounded, 
Generals Bee and Bartow and Colonel Fisher were killed, together 
with hundreds of others whose names were not so prominent, 
but whose conduct was as heroic and whose lives were as precious 
to their country and kindred. 

Before the enemy could bring up their fresh columns to regain 
the lost position, their lines on the extreme right began to waver. 
General Kirby Smith, who was bringing up the other part of 
the Army of the Shenandoah, appeared on our extreme left, and 
then began a retreat, which soon became a stampede, which 
would have enabled the Confederates to have gone into Wash- 
ington if they had pressed forward. 

Much has been written as to the effect of this first great battle 
of the war on the two sections of the country. The Confeder- 
ates have always lamented their lost opportunity of capturing 
Washington. The Federals have always tried to believe that 
their defeat was a blessing in disguise. 

Our regiment lamented the death of our Brigadier-General, 
Bee, who, in the six days that we were in his brigade, had won 
the respect and confidence of all ; and among our many dead we 
especially lamented the loss of Colonel Fisher — noble, true, 
brave, almost to a fault. He had the qualities that would have 
made him most useful in the army. No better provider for his 
men could be found; they were devoted to him. 

After the battle our brigade was commanded by General W. 
H. C- Whiting, and was known as the Third Brigade. We were 
camped for a week or two at Bull Run, but, to be in a healthier 
location, we were moved back and camped near Bristow Station, 
a place that afterwards became famous. Whilst here Colonel 

300 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

W. D. Pender came to us and took command. The regiment 
suifered severely from sickness and many died of disease. lu 
the fall of 1861 we were moved down near Freestone Point, on 
the Potomac, above Dumfries'. There we staid until cold 
weather, and then built winter-quarters. During the fall and 
winter we took our turn in picketing along the Potomac and on 
the Occoquan, and in guarding the batteries that were intended 
to command the river at Quantico and Evansport. Sometimes 
there would be alarms, and sometimes, whilst we were guarding 
these batteries, there would be long-range duels, and a few shells 
would be thrown at us, but we had no serious fighting. 

The winter 1861-62 was uneventful. About the 8th of 
March, 1862, in accordance with orders, we burned our winter- 
quarters, with a great deal of our baggage, camp supplies, etc., 
and marched southward, crossing the Rappahannock at Falmouth, 
and pitched our camp near- Fredericksburg. We were not 
pressed or hurried in the retreat, the movement seemed to be a 
deliberate one, and the necessity for the immense destruction of 
baggage and supplies of all sorts, which took place by order 
when the army fell back from Manassas, has never been made 

At Fredericksburg a number of recruits joined the regiment. 
Toward the latter part of March it was found that large num- 
bers of troops from McClellan's army were being transported 
down the Potomac. We were ordered to move again, and, leav- 
ing Fredericksburg, we took the road towards Richmond. After 
marching as far as Wilford Station, we were placed on board the 
cars, but were stopped at Ashland. After a few days' stay there, 
we started again in light marching order and went by the coun- 
try roads to Yorktown, arriving there towards the last of April, 
and were camped west of the town near the Williamsburg road. 
During our stay at Yorktown there were several alarms, and we 
were called into line several times, but the enemy did not 
advance. It was soon evident that some important movement 
was in contemplation. The preparation that was being made 
seemed to be for fighting the enemy there. 

Sixth Regiment. 301 

On the morning of the 4th of May we were called quietly 
into line, and our regiment was formed across the Williamsburg 
road, facing toward Yorktown. Regiment after regiment filed 
by — that movement had been going on all night — the whole 
array- was falling back, and we were assigned the post of honor, 
the rearguard on that road. There was nothing between us and 
McClellan's advancing array but a few cavalrymen. Again and 
again, many times during the forepart of that day, as our army 
passed on, we would drop back and reform our line across the 
road, prepared for the enemy's advance, but we had no fighting 
to do. When we got in sight of Williamsburg and the forts 
and earth-works that had been prepared for defense there, we 
expected to see them fully manned by our troops. But the 
troops were all resting around promiscuously, apparently with- 
out any expectation of an enemy. When we reached the earth- 
works we were not halted, but were marched right on, and after 
passing through the town we took the road that bore towards 
York River. That night when the camp-followers and strag- 
glers came into camp, they told us that our army had been sur- 
prised at Williamsburg, and that many men were killed. That 
surprise ought not to have taken place. Some one was negligent. 
On the next day we still continued in our march to lean over 
towards York River. General Franklin, with a large force, was 
going up the river on transports, escorted by gun-boats, and we 
were to prevent him from getting between General Johnston and 
Richmond, or interfering with the retreat. We had quite a bat- 
tle near Barhamsville, or Eltham's Landing. The enemy after- 
wards claimed it a success. We thought we succeeded. We 
did not drive his fleet down the river, he had too many gun- 
boats, but we prevented his coming off the river to impede the 
movements of our army. 

The army was now well on its way on the retreat from the 
Yorktown peninsula. The ordnance stores and other supplies 
that had been abandoned must have been immense. Some of it 
was brought down to the lines near Yorktown within a day or 

302 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

two before the retreat began. Was that good manag-ement? 
Was it a necessary loss? 

The march back towards Richmond was very disagreeable. 
There had been a great deal of rain ; the roads were very bad, 
muddy and miry. We got separated from our commissary 
wagons. The men suffered with hunger. 

One evening when the regiment was filed out of the road to 
camp — they had been without rations and none were in sight — a 
wagon came along loaded with corn in the ear. It was intended 
for the horses, but the men were so hungry that, upon the sug- 
gestion by some one that parched corn would do for subsistence, 
they rushed for the wagon and would have emptied it but for 
the interference of the guard, who told them that the commissary 
wagon was coming. 

When the army got within the lines that were finally chosen 
for the defense of Richmond our camp was north of the city. 
On the 29th and 30th of May we had heavy rains. A fearful 
thunder-storm passed over our camp. One stroke of lightning 
in our brigade disabled for a time about thirty men, of whom it 
was said that four died. The description of that storm as given ' 
in the Richmond Examiner the next morning was most graphic. 
It was remarkable as a literary production. In consequence of 
these heavy rains the Chickahominy River was much swollen, 
and General Johnston, who had withdrawn most of his army to 
the south side of that stream, thought it a good time to attack 
McClellan, whose army was on both sides of the river. On the 
31st of May we were hurried out in the direction of Seven 
Pines and joined in the attack. For a while we drove the 
enemy in fine style. They must have been completely surprised, 
for we passed through camps in which we found their dinner in 
the kettles being cooked, and in some cases it was smoking-hot 
on their camp-tables. After driving them back for a considera- 
ble distance they began to make a stand, and the fighting became 
furious. As we afterwards learned, we were not far from Fair 
Oaks Station, and nearly opposite the "Grape-vine Bridge," 
which was a new bridge constructed by them. Re-inforcemejits 

Sixth Eegiment. 303 

from the north side were pouring across this bridge and our 
advance was stayed. General Johnston, together with President 
Davis and General G. W. Smith, with a numerous staff, came 
up in the rear of our brigade. Here it was that General John- 
ston was wounded. That was nearly night, and as it was a dark 
evening the heavy battle-smoke soon made it impossible to see, 
and the firing ceased and we made no further advance. The 
next morning, Sunday, June 1st, found the two armies still in 
front of each other. But no heavy fighting was done on our 
part of the line. They did considerable shelling from the north 
side of the Chickahominy. So ended the battle of Seven Pines 
and Fair Oaks. After this battle Colonel Pender was promoted 
and Captain I. E. Avery was made Lieutenant-Colonel of the 
Sixth Regiment. 

About the 12th to 13th of June our division was placed 
aboard the cars at Richmond and carried by way of Lynchburg 
and Charlottsville to Staunton, and disembarking there, started 
down the Valley. But we made only one march in that direction 
when we met General Jackson's men coming up the Valley pike 
■ towards Staunton. We were turned about and marched by way 
of Waynesboro and across the Blue Ridge at Rockfish Gap 
towards Charlottsville. Our road was nearly along the railroad, 
and we could see train-load after train-load of troops moving 
east. Finally our turn came, and we were taken up and hauled 
to Trevillian's Depot, and thence were marched, bearing at first 
towards Fredericksburg, but at last turned to Ashland. Here 
we were told that Lee was going to capture McCIellau's army or 
drive him away from Richmond. We were on his right flank, 
and were to move early in the morning of the 26th. We did 
so, but before we had gotten in rear of McClellan's right, or 
had time to attack him, the Confederates in front of his lines at 
and near Mechanicsville charged him in front. They carried the 
works, but at fearful loss. Our brigade. Whiting's, had had 
only a slight skirmish in crossing Totapotamoi Creek, and if 
Jackson had been allowed a little longer time the enemy could 
not have awaited the attack in front, for Jackson was about to 

304 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

strike him in the rear. Whose fault or by whose mistake was 
the great loss of Confederates at Mechanicsville? 

On the 27th we took part in the battle of Gaines' Mill, or Cold 
Harbor, one of the most noted and hotly-contested battles of 
the war. The enemy, under General Fitzjohn Porter, was 
strongly posted on the east bank of Powhite Creek. His 
artillery was on top of the ridge, in front of which were two 
lines of infantry, so placed on the hill-side that the artillery and 
the two lines of infantry could all fire over each other on the 
advancing Confederates; and to reach their line we had to cross 
the creek in a deep ravine. They had felled the timber so as to 
hinder an attacking force. Our brigade, Whiting's, was formed 
in line, with Hood's (Texas) Brigade, as I recollect, on our left, 
and had moved forward until we were about within range of the 
enemy's musketry. A short halt was made. The field of bat- 
tle was before us: cannons belching forth fire and smoke; burst- 
ing shells; riderless horses rushing wildly about; smoking lines 
of infantry ; charging columns gallantly led by mounted officers; 
wounded men being borne to the rear, whilst the dead lay 
motionless and still ! It was the reality of the pictures given 
us by artists. There had been an unsuccessful attempt to drive 
the enemy from his strong position. Our line Was in readiness. 
The gallant Whiting, riding along in front of the line, was 
cheered by our men, and, turning to the line, raised his hat in 
acknowledgment of the salute, and called out, saying: "Boys, 
you can take it ! " and motioned towards the enemy's position. 
"Forward!" was the command all along the line. The advance 
across the open field on the west side of the creek; crossing the 
creek and working our way up the hill through the fallen timber; 
driving the two lines of infantry from behind their breastworks 
and capturing the artillery posted on the ridge behind them, was 
a severe test of those qualities which have made the Confederate 
soldier famous. It was a military feat which the historians of 
the war do not seem to have appreciated. The Sixth Regiment 
did its part in driving the enemy from a position which, after 
we had taken it and had time to view the situation, looked as if 

Sixth Regiment. 305 

it shpiild have been impregnable to troops attacking it in front. 
It has been said that President Davis watched this attack from 
where he was on the south side of the Chickahominy; saw its 
success, and, not knowing the troops or their commander, eulo- 
gized them, and said: "That charge has saved Richmond." 
When the battle ended it was getting dark. The loss of this 
position compelled the Federals to withdraw to the south side of 
the Chickahominy, which they did during that night, destroy- 
ing the bridges. McClellan was retreating to the James. Our 
pursuit was delayed until the bridges could be rebuilt. When 
we crossed to the south side the battle of Savage Station had 
been won. We passed through the battlefield on the 30th and 
assisted in forcing the passage of White Oak Swamp, which the 
enemy was stubbornly holding, in order to give time for his 
trains to get away. We were on the left of the line at Malvern 
Hill, and although under a terrible fire, supporting our artillery, 
we were not ordered to charge the enemy. On the morning of 
the 2d of July the enemy was gone, and we were marched in 
pursuit, and found him at Harrison's Lauding. Our lines were 
formed promptly, skirmishing began, and we thought we were 
to attack him at once, but General Lee concluded that his posi- 
tion, protected as it was by gun-boats, was too strong. McCIel- 
lan's army had not been captured, but the seige of Richmond 
had been raised. 

After watching the enemy for a few days, we were marched 
back to the neighborhood of Richmond, where we camped until 
August, when we started on the campaign known as the Pope 
campaign, so called because the Federal army was commanded 
by General John Pope, who rendered himself infamous by his 
uncivilized warfare and cruel treatment of citizens, and who 
withal made himself ridiculous by his braggadocio orders, which 
were followed by bad generalship and consequent defeat. Our 
brigade was commanded by Colonel (afterwards General) E. M. 
Law, and was in General Hood's Division. 

We took part in a number of skirmishes along the Rappa- 
hannock, and near Warrentou Springs, and when General Jack- 

306 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

son, at Manassas and Bull Run, was about to be separated from 
the other portion of the army, whilst we were marching hur- 
riedly to his relief, we found the enemy disputing our passage 
through Thoroughfare Gap. No time was to be lost. Com- 
munication with Jackson was necessary. We were filed by a 
narrow path up the mountain side to the summit on the left of 
the pass. The enemy was driven back and left the pass or gap 
open. From our position on the top of the mountain, on the 
evening of the 28th, we could see the firing of the guns and the 
explosion of the shells in the fight against Jackson, far away on 
Bull Run, or near it, but we could not hear the sound of a gun. 
Early on the 29th we were on the march to the relief of Jack- 
son, who had hard fighting, as we judged by the heavy firing 
which was then plainly to be heard. As soon as we came up 
our division. Hood's, was formed in line across the Warrenton 
turnpike and moved forward to attack the enemy's line, which 
was then pressing hard upon Jackson. We drove him back. 
We were heavily engaged also on the 30th, when the enemy 
was forced to give up the field. When the battle was over we 
found that the two armies had occupied about the same positions 
that were held by them on the 21st of July, 1861, except that 
they were reversed. The last stand by the enemy was made on 
the ridge or plateau on which stood the " Henry House," made 
famous as the scene of the severest part of the battle known as 
First Manassas. 

After the battle of Ox Hill on the 30th we were marched 
towards the Potomac, and fording it, we marched to Monocacy 
Bridge, near Frederick, in Maryland. Thence we went along 
the Baltimore and Ohio turnpike, crossing the mountains at 
Boonsboro, marching by the side of our wagon-trains all the 
way to Hagerstown. We were there only a short time, when we 
heard cannonading in the direction of Boonsboro. We were 
hurried back, and when we reached Boonsboro we heard heavy 
fighting upon the mountain. We were carried up to the pass 
and were first formed in line on the south side of the pike, and 
then to the north side and afterwards to the south side again, 

Sixth Regiment. 307 

but we were not heavily engaged in the battle. Early the next 
morning we found that our army had moved in the direction of 
the Potomac, and we were acting as the rearguard. Many times 
during the day our regiment was formed into line across the 
road, as the army fell back towards Sharpsburg. The enemy 
came in sight several times, but did not attack. When we reached 
the top of the hill above Sharpsburg, where the Federal ceme- 
tery now is, we found a considerable part of the army resting 
there. Lee and his staff were there, and soon a courier arrived 
bringing news of the capture of Harper's Ferry. About that 
time the enemy was seen placing a battery in the field north of 
the Antietam. He began throwing shells. The. camp-follow- 
ers were soon going further towards Virginia. But, under the 
direction of General Lee, the different commands were deploying 
into line. He was retreating no longer. 

Our brigade was carried west along the Hagerstown road to 
the Dunkard Church — St. Mumma's — where the Smoketown 
road branches off to the north. Forming our line along the 
Hagerstown road, we remained there during the rest of that day, 
the 15th of September, and on the 16th until late in the evening. 
Then the cavalry reported that the enemy was moving with 
strong lines and coming up in front of us. Our lines were then 
pushed forward in the direction of the Smoketown road ^ome 
distance, perhaps a quarter of a mile. Our regiment was on the 
east side of the Smoketown road, along a fence and skirt of 
woods, known as East Woods in the accounts of the battle. 
Sometime after dark a line of men was discovered moving along 
our front from our right towards our left, so unconcernedly that 
they were at first supposed to be Confederates, but when they 
were hailed and found to be enemies one volley from our line 
scattered them and we were not molested further that night. At 
sometime during the night, perhaps about one or two o'clock, 
we were carried back to (what was then) woods near the Dunk- 
ard Church. It is now a cleared field. Here we were told to 
rest. But early in the morning of the 17th, when it was hardly 
light, the battle opened. Our position, though we were then in 

North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

the second line, was a very trying one. The enemy's guns in our 
front poured shot and shell into us, whilst we were exposed to a 
cross-fire from his long-range guns, posted on the northeast side 
of Antietam Creek. The infantry in our front were soon 
engaged. There was an incessant roar of cannonading, and the 
roll of musketry was terrific. Wounded men were going back 
through our lines by scores. The battle was raging awfully. 
Our line was called into action, and moved to the front up the 
Smoketown road and between it and the Hagerstown pike. The 
front line had made a noble stand, but it was being pressed 
back. The enemy, with fresh lines, was pushing forward when 
we met him. Here it was that, for the first time in the war, I 
saw our men fix their bayonets in action, which they did at the 
command of General Hood, who was riding up and down the 
line. We broke the enemy's line and held our place for a while, 
but he was bringing up fresh columns and( overlapping our 
left, and we were forced back. The enemy seemed to be over- 
coming us until our left was re-inforced by troops that were 
ordered up from our right. They engaged the enemy and drove 
him back again to the north of the Dunkard Church, and our 
lines were re-established. There was no further heavy fighting 
on that part of the line. The heavy fighting in the afternoon 
was near the stone bridge east of the town. 

If the future historian will study the battle of Sharpsburg, 
the positions of the two armies and the number of troops belong- 
ing to each, he will be forced to conclude that it should be con- 
sidered one of the most noted battles of the war, and that Lee's 
army covered itself with glory there. 

Remaining on the field during the afternoon and night of the 
17th and all day of the 18th without any renewal of attack, the 
army on the night of the 18th moved across the Potomac into 
Virginia. We camped there for sometime near a big spring 
northwest of Winchester. Toward the latter part of October, 
General McClellan showed signs of an intention to advance into 
Virginia, east of the Blue Ridge. So we were marched across 
the mountains, and were kept marching until we were brought 

Sixth Regiment. 309 

up in front of Fredericksburg. Here we learned that McClellan 
had been removed and that Burnside had been placed in com- 
mand of the Army of the Potomac. As we neared Fredericks- 
burg we met old men and old women and children, some on foot, 
some in carriages, some being hauled in wagons; many of them 
apparently too sick to travel ; all vacating the town because the 
Federal commander had threatened to bombard it, which he did 
do a few days thereafter. 

It had been decided to organize the army anew and to brigade 
the troops by States, but the Sixth remained with Law's Brigade 
until after the battle of Fredericksburg, when it was placed, 
together with the Twenty-first, the Fifty-fourth and Fifty-sev- 
enth North Carolina Regiments, in a brigade commanded by 
General R. F. Hoke. 

Our brigade during the battle of Fredericksburg was on the 
line between Hamilton's Crossing and the to.wn, about in front 
of the Barnard House. General Franklin commanded that por- 
tion of the Federal army which confronted us. His attack was 
very powerful, and soon after the battle began the enemy took 
advantage of an interval that was inadvertently allowed in the 
line on our right towards Hamilton's Crossing and broke through. 
Here it was that General Gregg, of South Carolina, was mortally 
wounded. But the enemy's success was only temporary, for 
he was soon repulsed, and he did not, after that, show much 
disposition to press forward. Late in the afternoon our brigade 
was called upon to drive the enemy from an advanced position 
which he was holding along the railroad where it crossed 
Hazel Run or Deep Run. The Fifty-fourth and Fifty-seventh 
Regiments (N. C.) were placed in advance by General Law, at 
the request of their Colonels, McDowell and Godwin, and they 
drove the enemy in handsome style clear away from the railroad. 
General Law's Aide-de-camp, Lieutenant Smith, was killed in 
the effort to stop the two regiments in the pursuit of the enemy. 
This line we held. On the morning of the second day thereafter 
we found that there was no enemy in front of us. He was 

310 North Carolina Tkoops, 1861-65. 

on the north side of the Rappahannock. The campaigns of 
1862 were over. 

We went into winter-quarters on the hills southwest of 
Hamilton's Crossing in December, 1862, but were removed to 
Hoke's Brigade during the winter, which was in camp near 
Jackson's headquarters on the right of the line, and during the 
winter did our share of picketing along the river between 
Fredericksburg and Port Royal. 

General Burnside made an unsuccessful attempt to advance in 
January, 1863, but was forced to abandon it on account of the 
mud, and that movement was known as Burnside's "Mud 
March." He resigned, and General Hooker was placed in com- 
mand of the Army of the Potomac. When he made his advance 
in what is known as the Chancellorsville or the Wilderness cam- 
paign, our brigade was near the same part of the line which we 
occupied during the battle in December before. There was no 
very heavy fighting near Fredericksburg until the 4th. General 
Sedgwick, who was in command of the enemy's forces about 
Fredericksburg, moved out of the town, attacked and captured 
Marye's Hill, where there had been such awful destruction of life 
in December previous; and he appeared to be moving so as to 
strike the right of General Lee's line of battle up toward Chan- 
cellorsville. Our brigade was commanded by General Hoke, 
and we were at once moved from our position below Deep Run, 
so as to attack the enemy, who was then on the hills south of 
the town. The conflict was sharp, but short, and the enemy was 
soon on the retreat. In this fight General Hoke was wounded. 
By the next morning Hooker and his army were again on the 
north side of the Rappahannock. After a short rest our brigade 
was moved westward and crossed the Rapidan towards Culpep- 
per Court House; and after the battle of Brandy Station we 
were carried by long, hurried marches over the Blue Ridge, 
crossing the Shanandoah at Port Royal, and thence to Win- 
chester. There we took part in the battle which resulted in the 
capture of Milroy's command, although he himself escaped. 
There was a large number of prisoners, and one of our regi- 

Sixth Regiment. 311 

ments, the Fifty- fourth, was detailed to guard them and carry 
them up the Valley to Staunton. The Sixth Regiment and the 
other two regiments of the brigade went on in that series of 
movements which culmiaated at Gettysburg. We crossed the 
Potomac near Shepherdstown and passed through Sharpsburg, 
where we had lost so many of our regiment in September before ; 
thence on past Hagerstown, and nearly' to Chambersburg. We 
then bore to the right or easterly across the mountains, passing 
Heidlersburg, Berlin and other towns, and on to York. There 
we stopped and rested for a few days, camping in the old Fair 
Grounds. General Gordon, with a brigade of our division, 
pushed on still further towards Philadelphia and burned the 
bridge over the Susquehanna at Columbia. Leaving York, we 
soon found that we were retracing our march. On the afternoon 
of the 1st of July, when we, as it afterwards appeared, were within 
a few miles of Gettysburg, and whilst halted for a rest, although 
we could not hear or see any signs of battle, an order was passed 
along down the line to inspect arms and examine the cartridge- 
boxes and see that all were well supplied with ammunition, and 
directing also that there should be no straggling. Moving for- 
ward, we soon heard cannonading in our front, andsoon there- 
after we were in hearing of musketry. The road was cleared 
for the artillery to come forward, and we were formed into line 
of battle to protect it. The battle was raging on the west and 
northwest of the town, and we were engaging the lines that were 
formed on the north of the town. In the artillery duel that 
took place here, one of the guns which our regiment supported 
was disabled by a shot from one of the enemy's guns, which 
struck our gun exactly in the muzzle and split it. That might 
be called a center-shot. The enemy seemed to fight with more 
desperation and gallantry than we had been accustomed to in 
our engagements with him in Virginia. He was upon his 
own soil, and it was no longer a sentiment about the old flag, it 
was a fight for home. But our mfen were never more unfalter- 
ing. The long line of battle moved with great steadiness across 
the wide-extended fields of wheat which were just ready for the 

312 JS^OETH CaeolixVa Troops, 1861-'65. 

reaper. There was, on that field, another Eeaper gathering in a 
numerous harvest from the fields of Time. As we moved for- 
ward, one by one our men were left dead or wounded on the field 
behind us, but still our line advanced, and although the enemy 
made a determined stand we could see his line thinning down. 
Just north of the town, and a little to the east of the depot, 
he held his line until Our men crossed bayonets with him. 
Swords were used on him, and when the artillery which he 
was protecting fired its last round the stream of fire from the 
mouth of the gun crossed our line. It was necessary for him 
to be thus desperate in holding this position in order to protect 
the retreat from Seminary Ridge. The artillery was being car- 
ried back from Seminary Ridge, through the town, to Cemetery 
Hill. He was in full retreat through the town. We thought 
the battle of Gettysburg was over ; and so it was, for when we 
passed to the southeast side of the town and got in sight of 
Cemetery Hill we could see him placing his first gun on East 
Cemetery Hill, and we could see no troops out east of Cemetery 
Hill towards Culp's Hill. Our men were anxious to proceed 
and take possession of Cemetery Hill, and it was only by posi- 
tive orders that a halt was made. The line was soon reformed 
along a little rivulet that runs northeastwardly from Cemetery 
Hill, and between the town and Culp's Hill. But we had no 
orders for any further advance. As soon as it began to grow 
dark we could hear sounds of what might have been thousands 
of axes cutting down the timber on Culp's Hill. He made 
breastworks and lined the Cemetery Hill with artillery, and 
placed a battery on a small hill between Cemetery Hill and 
Culp's Hill, and his guns were also protected by earth-works 
which he threw up during the night. 

By the morning of the 2d all these places were full of infan- 
try, and his artillery was so posted as to be able to fire over 
the heads of his infantry, whilst a strong line of skirmishers 
was in front of all, which was frequently relieved. He kept 
up a galling fire on us all day. There was a terrific cannonade 
between the enemy's guns and ours, which were posted on the 

Sixth Regiment. 313 

north and east of the town. This was not very destructive to 
our infantry line, because, being in the valley, the shots passed 
over us. 

But late in the afternoon, after the artillery had about ceased 
firing, couriers and aids were seen riding rapidly from one com- 
manding officer to another. We knew what that meant. The 
order was given: "Forward, Guide Eight!" Hays' Brigade of 
Louisiana was on our right; ours, the Sixth Regiment, was next 
to Hays'; Colonel Isaac E. Avery, of the Sixth, was in command 
of our brigade; Lieutenant-Colonel S. McD. Tate was in com- 
mand of the regiment. Never can that time be forgotten. Every 
man in the line knew what was before him. We had seen the enemy 
gathering on Cemetery Hill; we had laid under the fire of his 
numerous guns; we knew the preparations he had made for 
us. Yet, promptly at the command, the line moved forward, 
and in a few minutes we were in full view of the enemy's bat- 
teries and his lines of infantry. His sharp-shooters emptied 
their rifles at us and fell back to their main line at once, and 
every gun was brought to bear upon us. The fire was terrific, 
but our men moved forward very rapidly, bearing to the right, 
having the batteries on Cemetery Hill as their objective point. 

As we approached the hill the guns on Battery Hill, over to- 
wards Culp's Hill, had an enfilading fire on us. Still our men 
rushed forward, crawled over the stone wall near the base 
of the hill, drove from behind it a strong line of infantry, 
and went still forward to the top of the hill, and silenced the 
numerous pieces of artillery that had been so advantageously 
posted. We had full possession of East Cemetery Hill, the key 
to General Meade's position, and we held it for several minutes. 

It was then after daylight had gone down, the smoke was very 
dense, and, although the moon was rising, we could not see what 
the enemy was doing, but we could hear him attempting to 
rally his men, and more than once he rallied close up to us. 
But our men had formed behind a rock wall, and as he ap- 
proached we fired a volley into him, which drove him back. This 
occurred at least twice. No one who has never been in a similar 

314 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

position can understand how anxiously we looiied for re-inforce- 
ments. None came, however, and before long orders came for 
us to fall back to our original position. 

By not supporting Hoke's Brigade of North Carolina and 
Hays' Brigade of Louisiana in the storming and capturing of 
Cemetery Hill the battle of Gettysburg was lost. I do not 
know whose fault it was, but I feel assured in saying that it 
was not the fault of the storming column. It did its whole 
duty and fell back only when orders came for it to do so. 

Much has been written about the battle of Gettysburg, and 
what was accomplished by the different conamands and the troops 
from the different States. But, at the risk of being charged with 
immodesty, I venture to claim that the storming and capturing 
of Cemetery Hill on the evening of the second day was not sur- 
passed by anything that was done during the three days' fight. 
The facts on which the claim is based will appear to any one 
who will go to the spot. He will there see the positions of the 
contending armies and the strength of the hill. The breastworks 
and embankments protecting the enemy's guns are still plainly 
visible. Its defenses and the lines of the positions of its de- 
fenders a-re all marked by durable monuments. And on the top- 
most summit he will find a cluster of monuments, the inscrip- 
tions on which recite the desperate assault made by Hoke's and 
Hays' Brigades on the 2d of July, 1863, and especially men- 
tion the hand-to-hand conflict, after the last round of ammuni- 
tion had been fired and the capture and spiking of the enemy's 
guns by the Confederates. 

I did not know at the time of the battle that the men had 
spiked the enemy's guns. But on a visit to the battlefield since the 
war I met one of the cannoneers who helped to man those guns 
on that evening, and he told me of what a terrible raking fire 
they had at us until we got close up to the hill; of how many 
shots they fired to the minute from each gun; and he said it was 
a fact that several of their guns were found to have been spiked 
by our men, as shown by the recitals inscribed on those monu- 

Sixth Regiment. 315 

These are records that cannot be gainsaid, and they will 
endure. I refer to them with pride: not for myself, but for my 
regiment, and especially for and on behalf of the troops from 
North Carolina, whose glorious deeds at Gettysburg have been 
so much ignored. 

The noble soldierly bearing of the many regiments of North 
Carolina troops that took part in that three days' fight — on Semi- 
nary Ridge and Rock Creek on the first day, and with General 
Johnson on Gulp's Hill on the evening of the second and morn- 
ing of the third day, and in the charge on Cemetery Ridge on 
the third day, have not been given due prominence in the accounts 
of the battle of Gettysburg. But here, on Cemetery Hill, those 
who felt the prowess of her troops have contributed to their fame 
by inscribing their deeds on imperishable tablets, which they 
have erected on the highest ground and in the most conspicuous 
position on this most noted battlefield of the war — a battlefield 
which, by reason of the vast sums of money expended on it, is 
destined to be made one of the most noted battlefields in the 

The tourist or traveler visiting this field in days to come, as 
he goes from point to point with a well-informed guide, will 
hear him, in describing the operations of the two armies on the 
first day, on the second day and on the third day, make frequent 
mention of the North Carolina troops. 

From the point known as "The Bloody Angle" he will de- 
scribe Pickett's charge, so called because General Pickett was 
in command of the assaulting columns, a charge very unjustly 
spoken of as " The charge of Pickett and his Virginians," to 
the prejudice of troops from other States that participated in it, 
among whom were several regiments of North Carolina troops, 
who acted well their part, and will be duly mentioned in all 
true accounts of the fight. 

When they come to stand on Cemetery Hill, to which every 
visitor will go, for from it nearly all the field can be pointed out 
except Lee's right on the Emmettsburg road, and Meade's left 
on Roundtop, the guide will point westward toward Cashtown 

316 NoETH Carolina Teoops, 1861-'65. 

and the Chambersburg pike, where the fighting began. North 
Carolina was there. 

He will then point out Seminary Ridge, beyond which the 
Federal General Reynolds was killed; the railroad cut; and the 
rock wall from which the Federals were driven after a most 
determined stand. North Carolina was there. He will turn 
towards the field on the north of the town, where Ewell's Corps 
came in and where the Federal General Bartow was killed ; and 
still further to the east, where Early's Division fought along 
Rock Creek and near the brick-yard, and through the town. 
North Carolina was all along there. Turning then directly east, 
he will call attention to the monuments, two or three miles off, 
which mark the place of the cavalry fighting. North Carolina 
was there too. Then he will show Gulp's Hill, where General 
Johnson and his men did such noble work and came so near 
being successful in their efforts to turn Meade's right flank. 
North Carolina was there. 

And to conclude his description from this point of view, the 
guide will then tell how Hays' Louisiana Brigade and Hoke's 
North Carolina Brigade (then commanded by Colonel I. E. 
Avery), after laying under fire all day, some of which was a ter- 
rible cannonade, emerged in line of battle from the little valley 
that runs through Gulp's field, and charged up the hill through 
the shot and shell and grape and canister and ball that was 
poured upon them by the well-posted Federals. He will point 
to where Avery fell, and tell how they still came on and on, 
driving back the infantry and then encountering the gunners, 
who resisted even to a hand-to-hand struggle, until finally the 
guns were silenced and spiked; and he will then ask that the 
records of those facts may be read in the inscriptions on the 
costly, durable monuments erected there by the Federal regi- 
ments and batteries that were in the fight. North Carolina loas 

The Confederate soldier — the North Carolina Confederate 
soldier — may glory in the records of Gettysburg. 

In the charge on this hill, the Sixth Regiment being on the 

Sixth Regiment. 317 

right of the brigade, next to Hays' Brigade, was the only regi- 
ment of the North Carolina brigade which went on Cemetery 
Hill, towards which its advance was directed by Colonel Tate. 
The other regiments of the brigade, the Twenty-first and Fifty- 
seventh, being on the left, were brought up more directly against 
Culp's Hill. 

On the 3d day we remained in line along near the southern 
edge of town. We could hear the fighting to the south of us 
along the Emmettsburg road, but we were not heavily engaged 
at any time during the day — only constant firing on the skirmish 

On the 4th we were in line along Seminary Ridge. On the 
night of the 4th we could see that our army was leaving Get- 
tysburg, and when day came on the 5th we found that our 
brigade was again given the post of honor as the rearguard on 
one of the roads by which the army was crossing the mountains 
towards Hagerstown. 

It is claimed that General Meade was victorious at Gettys- 
burg, and in one sense he was, but it was by no means a decisive 

We were all day on the 5th making the short distance be- 
tween Gettysburg and the foot of the mountains, and we were 
not seriously molested by any pursuit until late in the evening, 
after sundown, when we were well in the mountains. The enemy 
ran up on a hill in our rear and threw a few shells at us, but 
when our sharp-shooters deployed and started towards him he 
suddenly fell back, and we were molested no more. 

We next formed our line of battle up and down the Potomac, 
near Hagerstown, the river, by reason' of the continued rains, 
being too deep to be forded. Here was another chance for Gen- 
eral Meade, if his army was elated by his achievements at 

General Lee's army remained in line ready for an expected 
attack, but no attack was made. When the river became 
passable the pontoons were placed, and portions of the army 

318 iSfoETH Carolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

crossed on the bridge, whilst others forded. "We were back into 
Virginia again. The Gettj'sburg campaign was over, but many, 
many noble soldiers who crossed over with us in June now failed 
to answer to their names at roll-call. 

After getting into Virginia we were carried back and camped 
a few miles northwest of Winchester. Whilst stationed there 
we were ordered to prepare for marching, and late one evening 
we started westward toward the Alleghany mountains. We 
marched all night, and in the morning we were at the western 
base of the mountains in West Virginia, and took the roads 
leading northward. The object of our expedition was to capture 
some of the enemy's forces that were guarding a gap to the north 
of us; but they had gotten information of our movements and 
escaped, and we came back to camp. 

We were soon in motion again, and were marched up the Valley 
and crossed over to the eastern side of the Blue Ridge and on to the 
neighborhood of Culpepper Court House and the line of the Rapi- 
dan. We took part in all those movements and engagements in the 
early part of October, along the Rappahannock and near Warren- 
ton Springs, which led up to the disastrous engagement at Bris- 
tow Station on the 14th of October. 

Meade's army was falling back towards Washington, and we 
were in pursuit. Our brigade had formed east and west across 
the road in his rear, and we were fast closing in on him. But 
General Hill struck him on the flank, near Bristow, just south 
of Cedar Run, with two brigades. General Warren turned his 
whole force on him and played on him with artillery that was 
posted on the north side of the run. Hill's brigades were re- 
pulsed with terrible loss. The eifort to cut the enemy in his 
retreat had failed. We then fell back to the north side of the 
Rappahannock, tearing up the railroad from Cub's Run all the 
way back to Rappahannock Station. 

As every thing grew quiet we were directed to prepare winter- 
quarters, and did so with a hearty good-will. By the 7th of 
November we were tolerably well prepared for winter; but in 

Sixth Regiment. 319 

the middle of the afternoon on that day the "long-roll" was 
beat and we were marched about seven miles, double-quick for a 
great part of the way, to Rappahannock Station. 

West of the railroad bridge the river bends to the south, and 
a pontoon bridge was kept across the river. On the north side 
of the river there was a line of trenches, and we were hurried 
over into them. There were three or four pieces of artillery on 
a bluff near the river, just opposite the pontoon bridge, to our 
right. There Hays' Louisiana Brigade was posted. The ene- 
my's lines soon appeared in our front. Owing to some unusual 
state of the atmosphere, or currents of the air, we could see him 
firing at us, but could not hear the report of his guns until 
he was close up to us. He seemed to know the ground, 
and his heaviest attack was on our right nearest the pontoon 
bridge. The conformation of the ground was such that we 
could not direct our fire so as to bear upon the heavy lines that 
were thrown against Hays, and he, after a gallant resistance, 
was overcome, and the enemy had the battery and was in full 
view of the pontoon bridge, which was then within musket-range 
from him, and he had an enfilading fire on our part of the 
line, which was also receiving a fire from the enemy in our front. 
Our men were ordered out of the trenches to form a line to try 
and retake the battery, but with the enemy advancing in our 
front and the severe fire from the hill on which the battery was 
situated, it was impossible to do so. No supporting troops were 
coming from the south side of the river. Hays' men were re- 
treating, and the enemy was pouring a deadly fire into the 
stream of men who were rushing across the pontoon bridge to 
the south side of the river. Our regiment and those to our left 
were cut off and the river was too deep to be forded. The only 
chance of escape was to run the gauntlet or swim the river. It 
was getting dark. Some ran the gauntlet across the bridge; 
some swam the river. The writer was one of a considerable 
number who rushed across the bridge and reached the south bank 
safely, whilst many who attempted it fell pierced with balls and 
tumbled headlong into the river. A large portion of the brigade 

320 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

was captured. The enemy was so intent on crowding our men 
back into the horse-shoe bend of the river that a considerable 
number, after formally throwing down their guns and being 
ordered to the rear, in going back found that the bridge was 
not guarded, and so slipped across to the south side. This fight, 
though of short duration, was a severe one and against great 
odds. We had no support or re-inforcements. 

The wisdom of the generalship by which our two brigades were 
placed on the north bank of a deep river to meet the advance of a 
great army is not apparent. Those of us who escaped capture re- 
formed our companies, and by the addition of some recruits the 
regiment was intact again. But we were not permitted to go 
into winter-quarters any more. We were kept moving, watching 
the enemy. He was somewhat emboldened, and attempted what 
was known to our men as the "Mine Run Campaign." It was 
about the last of November, and the weather was bitter cold. Al- 
though we were under a considerable artillery fire, and did some 
heavy skirmishing between the lines of battle formed by the two 
armies, yet there was no general engagement, and the enemy gave 
up the movement, and on December 2d withdrew his forces to the 
north side of the Rapidan again. 

The^campaigns of 1863 were ended. 

Early in January, 1864, we were started again and were car- 
ried through Richmond and Petersburg, and thence to Garys- 
burg, N. C. Our men began almost to believe the rumor that 
we were being carried to North Carolina to hunt up deserters. 
Unpleasant as such duty would have been, there was rejoicing 
at the thought of being nearer home, and with a pathos that can- ' 
not be described, the men sang Gaston's glorious hymn : 

"Carolina, Carolina, Heaven's blessings attend her," 
"While we live we will cherish, protect and defend her." 

Taking the cars again, we headed towards Weldon, but there, 
instead of going on the Gaston road, we went towards Golds- 
boro and thence to Kinston. We joined in the expedition to 

Sixth Eegiment. 321 

New Bern, took part in the engagement at Bachelor's Creek 
Bridge and formed our line in sight of the enemy's breastworks 
in front of New Bern. But no attack was made. After a day 
or two there, we marched back to Kinston. When we left Kins- 
ton we were carried by way of Goldsboro and Rocky Mount to 
Tarboro, and thence were marched hurriedly to Plymouth. 
We took part in the storming of the outer works and final cap- 
ture of Plymouth, April 20th. It was in this battle and whilst 
storming Fort Wessels that we first had to contend with hand-gre- 
nades. Whilst our men were in the ditch around the fort the enemy 
threw hand-grenades quite freely, but they did not prove to be 
very destructive, and the fort soon surrendered. This was about 
dark on the first day, and the surrender of this fort brought 
us in front of the main line of works around the town. 
Early in the morning the battle was renewed all along the 
line, and the' Ram "Albemarle" was brought down the river to 
assist. The battle soon resulted in the capture of the town, with 
a large number of prisoners and considerable stores. We then 
marched on Little Washington on Tar River, but the enemy 
vacated it before we got there. 

Spring was now well advanced and serious work was threat- 
ened in Virginia. Grant was moving on the Rapidan, and the 
Petersburg & Weldon Railroad was threatened by troops on the 
south side of the James. We were hurried back towards Rich- 
mond, but were stopped near Belfield and Hicksford to protect 
the bridges in that neighborhood for a few days. Then we were 
carried to Petersburg to prevent Butler's forces from capturing 
the city. Then Butler, failing to get into Petersburg, made a 
heavy demonstration out from Bermuda Hundreds, threatening 
the Petersburg & Richmond Railroad. We were marched over 
there. Butler failed to take the railroad, and, as Grant said, 
was "bottled up." 

We were marched over to Richmond and northward towards 
Fredericksburg, and next formed in line of battle a little to the 


322 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

north of Hanover Junction. We were back with the army of 
Northern Virginia again. 

An attacii from Grant's army was hourly expected. But 
there was no general engagement, only some skirmishing on our 
part of the line. As General Grant swung around down the 
river, we were marched so as to conform to his movements, and 
keep between him and Richmond. When he got to a point 
nearly north of Richmond he crossed over the Pamunkey River 
and advanced directly toward the city. Our line was along the 

On Sunday evening, May 29, 1864, the writer of this sketch 
had his own company and two other companies on the skirmish 
line quite hotly engaged until after dark. After night-fall 
everything was quiet, and early in the morning, before it was 
light, we had orders to fall back to the main line. But hardly 
had we gotten back to the regiment when orders were brought 
to him to take the same men back to the same skirmish line and 
hold it until heavily pressed by the enemy; and, as they pressed 
us, to fall back to the main line. We were soon in our place, 
and it was not long before the enemy came up in force in our 
front and as far as we could see to our right and to our left. 
We were on the north side of the creek, along the brow of the 
hill ; in front of us was a level field, in our rear wa^ a valley 
which had been cleared for cultivation, and the ground sloped 
from our line back to the run of the creek, and then up 
on the south side, which was wooded, back to the main line 
on the brow of the hill. The skirmishing soon became furious 
all along the line. In falling back our part of the line had to 
traverse the cleared ground until we began to ascend the slope 
on the south side of the creek, and the enemy, who rushed 
to the brow of the hill, poured a destructive fire into us. 
After we had gotten on the south side of the creek the writer, 
in passing from the left to the right along the line, received a 
shot in the ankle which disabled him entirely. Fearing capture, 
he, without waiting for the litter-bearers, called on his men to 
carry him back. Oh ! how true and good and faithful those 

Sixth Regiment. 323 

men had, under all circumstances, been to him. Promptly when 
the call was made, three or four good soldiers of his company 
lifted him and carried him back till the litter-bearers were met. 
He was then carried by them to the ambulance station, and 
thence to the hospital, and there, when his turn came, he was 
placed on the operating-table, and when he awoke his left 
foot was gone — the surgeons said amputation was necessary. 
And so ended his career as an active soldier. Any further 
history of the regiment is based on information derived from 
other sources. 

The fighting above referred to was preliminary to the great 
battle of Cold Harbor on the 31st of May and on the 1st, 2d 
and 3d of June, in which the Federal losses were awfully heavy. 
The Confederate loss was comparatively small. The one was 
reported at about twelve hundred, the other at about thirteen 

Those who eulogize General Grant have a difficult task in 
vindicating the orders which caused such fearful losses in this 
battle. History tells it that he ordered charge after charge, and 
only desisted when his men declined to charge again. 

The writer, whilst lying on his cot in the hospital in Rich- 
mond, was told by the doctor in charge that s(jme of his old 
comrades had come in to see him, and when he looked up he 
saw that it was some of the Sixth Regiment, North Carolina 
Troops, who had been wounded at Cold Harbor. They told him 
of the awful slaughter of Federals in front of the Confederate 

The second Cold Harbor was a decisive battle and virtually 
closed the overland campaign against Richmond. General Grant 
was foiled in his eifort to get between Lee and Richmond. Grant 
then decided to transfer his forces to the James River. 

About the 12th to 14th of June, when General Grant began 
to change his base to the James, the cavalry was threatening the 
line of the railroad towards Gordonsville, and Hunter was 
moving up the Valley. Early's Division, to which the Sixth Regi- 
ment belonged, was marched rapidly from the Chickahominy 

324 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

towards Gordonsville, in which section of the country Sheridan's 
Cavalry was raiding. 

Hampton's Cavalry had checked Sheridan. Early's forces 
pushed on through the smoking ruins that marked the line of 
Sheridan's retreat, until near Gordonsville a train was met back- 
ing down to carry them to Lynchburg, which place was reached 
about sunrise on the morning of the 17th. Jumping off the 
cars, the men were hurriedly marched up the steep streets and 
out to the field west of the town, and were just in time to save 
it. The cavalry of General Jackson, sometimes known as 
" Mud-wall Jaokson," were being driven back by Hunter's men, 
who were advancing hilariously. But consternation struck 
them when they met Lee's infantry. Then followed the greatest 
foot-race ever witnessed in war. Back through Liberty, Buford's 
Gap, and across the Valley into and beyond the North Mountain 
the despoilers ran, strewing the line of their flight with arms, 
blankets, knapsacks, and even shoes and hats. 

General Hunter, having retreated through West Virginia to- 
ward the Ohio, General Early moved rapidly down the Valley, 
the enemy falling back before him until they reached Harper's 
Ferry and Maryland Heights. 

On the 3d, of July General Siegel's force was driven from 
Martinsburg across the Potomac at Shepherdstown. General 
Early followed, moving through Hagerstown, and thence east- 
ward, occupying Frederick City on the 7th. The militia that 
opposed the advance were dispersed by our skirmish line. As 
the army marched through Frederick the citizens tauntingly 
said : " Go ahead ! You will soon meet regular soldiers." Our 
men replied : " All right, they are the fellows we are hunting 

Sure enough, at Monocacy Bridge, a few miles east of Frede- 
rick, General Lew Wallace, since of " Ben-Hur " fame, had a large 
force in position on the left bank of the river. General Early 
attacked him on the 8th, forced the passage of the river and drove 
General Wallace back towards Pennsylvania. That left the 

Sixth Regiment. 325 

road towards Washington and Baltimore open. Early promptly 
set out towards Washington and arrived at Rockville on the 10th, 
and on the next day his forces formed line of battle in sight of the 
Capitol and within easy range of its powerful defenses. The Sixth 
Regiment laid in the front yard of F. P. Blair's place, "Silver 
Spring." Occasional shells Were thrown out from the big guns, 
but there was no general engagement. No attack was made; the 
works were too strong and to'o well garrisoned for Early's small 
force. After two or three days' skirmishing Washington was aban- 
doned, and the army recrossed the Potomac at White's Ford 
near Leesburg, and two days afterward encamped near Berry- 

Late in the evening of the next day word came that a force 
of the enemy was moving from Martinsburg towards Winches- 
ter. By a forced night march the brigade, General Raraseur 
commanding, reached the front of that town about sunrise the next 
day. Some couriers came in with reports of a very large force of 
the enemy approaching. General Ramseur did not seem to think 
that it was a large force. He ordered the Sixth Regiment to move 
forward on the Pike road about two miles, to a piece of woods, 
to meet the enemy there. After the Sixth Regiment moved off, 
however, upon further information, he followed with the whole 
brigade. He soon galloped up to the front and gave orders for 
the formation of the line of battle. During the execution of this 
order the enemy appeared in large numbers. The Sixth, having 
been in advance, had just gotten into position, and had not loaded 
their rifles, when the enemy began firing. It was a critical mo- 
ment. The Sixth charged single-handed and fought until nearly 
surrounded ; but the enemy had overpowering numbers, and 
the whole brigade was outflanked, and all had to fall back to- 
gether. This fight was known in that part of the army as 
" Ramseur's defeat "; but it was not so spoken of him in dis- 
paragement of him or his generalship, for he was as gallant a 
soldier as ever lived, and he soon fell fighting nobly at Cedar 

326 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

During the remainder of the summer and fall of 1864 the 
regiment was with Early, moving back and forth, up and down the 
Valley, as he would drive the enemy towards the Potomac and 
Harper's Ferry, and in turn be driven back up the Valley 
towards Staunton, the enemy having overwhelming odds always 
against us. ' 

About the 8th or 10th- of August, General Sheridan was 
transferred from Grant's army and took command in the Valley. 
Our forces under Early had fallen back to Fisher's Hill. Sheri- 
dan, hearing that re-inforcements were sent to Early, commenced 
retreating, and was pursued through Winchester and until he 
withdrew to Harper's Ferry and Maryland Heights. 

Before daylight on the morning of September 18th, while posted 
in front of Winchester, Sheridan, with a force of fifty-four thous- 
and attacked Early, who, according to reports, had only about seven 
thousand infantry and not more than ten thousand all told. Our 
line was drawn out very thin to cover the approach. The enemy 
charged time and again through the open field, for we had no cover. 
Yet our line was not broken until about sundown, and only then 
because the cavalry was thrown around our left flank. General 
Rodes, commanding the division, and General Godwin, com- 
manding the brigade, were killed here. 

From Winchester we fell back to Fisher's Hill, near Stras- 
burg. Sheridan followed, and on the 22d attacked us again, 
sending two divisions of his cavalry (he is reported to have had 
ten thousand cavalrymen, splendidly armed and equipped) np the 
Luray Valley to intercept, at New Market, any retreat by Early. - 
In this they did not succeed. Although the battle of Fisher's 
Hill went against Early, he made good his retreat to the upper 
Valley and escaped Sheridan's overwhelming odds. 

Having been re-inforced, Early again moved down the Valley, 
and reached Cedar Creek about the 18th of October. Sheridan's 
army was camped on the heights overlooking Strasburg and 
Cedar Creek. 

Our regiment, together with other infantry, was started about 

Sixth Eegiment. 327 

midnight and marched by a cow-path or trail around the end of 
the Massanutton Mountain ; forded the river below the mouth 
of Cedar Creek ; formed line of battle before it was good day- 
light, and attacked the enemy, completely surprising him, and 
soon had him, panic-stricken, flying down the Valley turnpike 
towards Middletown. There he attempted to rally, but the 
Confederates followed closely and his retreat was continued on 
towards Newtown. The route seemed to be so complete that 
the half-famished and poorly clothed men of Early's army found 
the rich spoils in the captured camp and stores of the Federal 
suttlers too tempting, and so many of them straggled that when 
General Wright, who was in command of the Federals, reformed 
his line near Newtown, and General Sheridan came riding in 
from Winchester and took command, our lines were too weak to 
resist their attack, and before night the Federals had regained 
their camp. In this fight General Ramseur, commanding our 
division, was killed. General Early halted for the night at 
Fisher's Hill, and on the next day fell back further up the 
Valley, towards Staunton. 

The battle of Cedar Creek was about the last of the Valley 
campaign. Indeed, the Valley was so devastated by General 
Sheridan that our army could hardly find subsistence. During 
his advances and withdrawals, according to his own dispatch to 
his Government, " the whole country from the Blue Ridge to the 
North Mountain had been made entirely untenable for a rebel 
army. This destruction embraced the Luray galley and The 
Little Fort Valley as well as the main Valley." Such cruelties 
and barbarities shall ever remain as a stain upon General Sheri- 
dan's character, and upon the War Department for not rebuking 
him, and upon General Grant, who directed jt, and concluded 
his letter to Sheridan by adding: " If the war is to last another 
year, let the Shenandoah Valley remain a barren waste." 

If it be asked why, in writing this short history of the Sixth 
regiment, these charges of vandalism against such prominent 
Federal generals are inserted, the answer is : It is part of 

328 North Caeolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

the history of the war, and it ought to be told until all the 
people should know it. The Sixth North Carolina Regiment, 
with all Early's troops, had witnessed this devastation ; they 
had been marching through this barren waste; they were tired 
and hungry too when they were roused up on the night of the 
18th, and after marching all night over a rugged road and fight- 
ing so well on the morning of the 18th, it is easy to understand 
how, when tbey saw the enemy flying down the Valley pike, 
many of the hungriest ones turned aside to help themselves out 
of the rich commissary stores that they had captured. They 
ought not to have done so, but some of them did; and Early's 
force was so small, reported at only nine thousand men all told, 
that, counting out the killed aud wounded and the stragglers, it is 
not surprising that Sheridan was able to drive back those remain- 
ing in line. No one but those who have tried it can tell how hard 
it is to restrain hungry men when in sight of the food they 
crave. But in all these engagements and reverses the Sixth regi- 
ment maintained its organization and was able to show its colors 
after every fight. 

Towards the close of the fall the Sixth Regiment, together 
with the remaining troops of Ramseur's and Rodes' Divisions, 
were placed under General Gordon and sent. back to Petersburg. 
The Sixth Regiment occupied the line of intrenchments opposite 
the "Tall Tower" until January, 1865, when it was carried to 
the right, near Burgess's Mill and Hatcher's' Run. 

The enemy made a determined effort to turn the Confederate 
right about the 5th to 6th of February. The Sixth Regiment 
was heavily engaged in the attempt to beat him back. In this 
fighting General Pegram, commanding our division, was killed. 
General Grant was trying to get to the South Side Railroad; he 
failed in this, but he secured an extension of his lines to Hatch- 
er's Run. Fighting was now going on constantly oii the out- 
posts and picket lines. 

Soon after the battle of Hatcher's Run the Sixth Regiment was 
carried back again through Petersburg to the trenches opposite 

Sixth Regiment. 329 

Fort Steadman. There it remained in the mud, as mauy of 
them expressed it, holding this part of the line until the 25th 
of March. 

Before day, on the 25th of March, the Sixth Regiment and 
other troops were ordered to move out noiselessly in front of the 
trenches, and to dash across the narrow space that divided the 
two armies (not more than one hundred and fifty yards); men 
with axes were to cut and tear away the abatis ; and as soon as 
it could be done, the men were to rush in, capture the fort and 
the lines to the right and left. That the men might know their 
friends, each man of the attacking force was to have a piece of 
white cloth tied around his left arm. This looked like a des- 
perate attack. The Sixth Regiment and other troops immedi- 
ately in front of Fort Steadman, the lines being nearest together 
there, were to lead. They did what they were ordered to do, 
and, perhaps to the surprise of our own people, and certainly to 
the surprise of the enemy, it worked well for a while. Every 
one did his part. The abatis was cut and pulled away in short 
order. The men rushed through, captured Fort Steadman and bat- 
teries to the right and- left of it. A large number of prisoners 
were taken and several pieces of artillery. The troops that were 
to support this movement on the right, towards Fort Haskell, 
did not succeed so well, and failed to capture it. Daylight soon 
came; the Federals recovered from their surprise and turned 
upon us their artillery, whiqh, together with the massed lines of 
infantry, made it, to use the words of one of the Sixth Regiment, 
a very hell for us. 

It soon became evident that the position was untenable. The 
supporting troops were being withdrawn. The Sixth Regiment 
had, in desperation, been charged against a mass of infantry 
coming up in their front, and they were the last to withdraw. 
They returned to their ditches under a severe cross-fire — more 
to be dreaded than any forward movement; but, to use the 
language of one who was there, "they came back leaving none but 
their dead." 

330 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Within a few days Lee's army was compelled to abandon 
Petersburg. The battle at Five Forks was lost on April 1st, and 
at day-break on Sunday, April 2d, the Confederate line in front of 
Petersburg was broken and the Federal artillery opened all along 
our front. When night came the Confederates, although ground 
had been lost, were still holding Petersburg, but the evacuation of 
the city, and, as a consequence, of Richmond also, had been deter- 
mined on. That night the army withdrew, and whilst fires were 
blazing up here and there, and heavy explosions which shook the 
very ground followed each other in rapid succession along the Con- 
federate lines from Petersburg to Richmond, the Federals failed to 
move forward to ascertain the cause; and by daylight of the 3d 
the Confederates were all on the Chesterfield side, and well away 
from the two cities, on the roads towards Amelia Court House. 

In the almost continued movements, fightings and skirmish- 
ings of the next few days the regiment bore its part with Gor- 
don's Corps. Hoping to find at Amelia Court House commis- 
sary stores, the troops, having then been without rations for 
nearly two days, were told that no rations were there. The for- 
agers who were sent out to seek supplies -returned with almost 
nothing. Many of them were captured in their search for food. 

The road to Burkeville was occupied by -the enemy, and the 
retreat bore further to the north through Deatousville, and thence 
toward Farmville. The enemy's cavalry was striking all along 
the retreating line, sometimes repulsed and sometimes capturing 
artillery and wagons which the horses were too weak to move 
with any degree of rapidity. 

On the 6th the Appomattox was crossed at the High Bridge. 
On the morning of the 7th a sharp attack was made and a rush 
made for the Confederate wagon train. General Gordon turned 
on them and compelled them to withdraw, capturing some pris- 
oners. The retreat was then continued. 

On the evening of the 8th Appomattox Court House was 
reached. It was then an insignificant court-house village. It 
is now an historic place, for there, on the 9th of April, 1866, 
the Amy of Northern Virginia ceased to contend with the armies 

Sixth Eegimbnt. 331 

of the United States, and General Lee on that day accepted the 
ter^s of surrender offered by Generial Grant. Having men- 
tioned General Grant's inhumane directions to General Sheridan 
in the fall of 1864 to devastate the Valley, it is a pleasure now 
to note that the terms of surrender were generous; and he is to 
be commended, in that afterwards, when blood-thirsty civilians 
were disposed to disregard them, he insisted that his Government 
should comply with them, and used his power and influence to 
that end. 

A flag of truce appeared on Gordon's line. General Lee 
was seen riding back to the village, and it was soon known 
all along the line that the army was to be surrendered. When 
General Lee returned from his interview with General Grant, 
the lines of battle broke and the men crowded up around 
him, anxious to take him by the hand. Many attempts have 
been made to describe the great soldier's final farewell to his 
troops as, overpowered by his feelings, he sobbed: " Men, loe have 
fought through the war together — / have done the best I could for 
you," and sadly rode away. The emotions of that scene — a great 
general and his brave, faithful soldiers weeping farewell to each 
other — cannot be described. 

The soldier-victors were generous and gave rations to the half- 
starved Confederates without any insulting taunts. Would that 
the same could be said of the political victors who controlled 
affairs at Washington. 

The 10th and 11th were occupied in preparing the lists and 
schedules and other papers for the surrender, and on the morn- 
ing of the 12th the troops, the remains of the Army of North- 
ern Virginia, formed for the last time. The artillery was drawn 
up by poor, bony horses and parked, the arms were stacked, the 
accoutrements deposited and the battle flags laid down. 

The Sixth Regiment was there, and of the perhaps two thou- 
sand men whose names had been on the roll, about one hundred 
and forty-three answered to that final roll-call. 

We had a regimental flag, a beautiful silken banner, on which 
the sister of Colonel Fisher had beautifully embroidered the coat- 

332 North Carolina Troops, 1861 -'65. 

of-arms of North Carolina and presented it to the regiment at 
its organization. It was highly prized ; it waved over the regi- 
ment at the capture of Eickett's Battery at First Manassas, and 
over Eickett's Battery and Weidrick's Battery on Cemetery 
Heights at Gettysburg, July 2d, 1863. It was not always used 
in battle, especially after battle flags had been distributed to the 
army. It was generally brought out on parades and general 
reviews; but it was not displayed at Appomattox. It was care- 
fully preserved and brought to North Carolina. It is the same 
that was shown at the laying of the corner-stone of the Confed- 
erate Monument at Raleigh, May 20, 1894. 

The war was over; the Sixth Eegiment had served out the 
time for which it had enlisted. 

I have thus briefly sketched the principal movements and 
engagements in the Confederate war in which the Sixth North 
Carolina State Troops took part. As an organization it was dis- 
tinguished for its discipline and soldierly bearing. It was led 
to the field by one of the most heroic souls that ever drew blade, 
Colonel C. F. Fisher, who was killed at First Manassas. The 
example he set in his short career was not lost on the officers and 
men of his command. They were taught that, when ordered to 
charge a line or battery they must succeed, and that having taken 
a position it was to be held until they were ordered to move from 
it. No politicians held commissions in this regiment. There 
was no bickering or scheming for office or promotion, no seeking 
for newspaper notoriety. Their thought and desire seemed to 
be to serve the State that sent them to the field for the purpose 
of sustaining State rights and constitutional liberty. 

Nothing has been written concerning "the privations of the 
camp or toils of the march," of feet bleeding and forms shiver- 
ing for lack of shoes and clothing, of how our men, beginning 
at First Manassas, supplied themselves with improved arms cap- 
tured from the enemy, seeking first to get a good rifle and accou- 
trements and then the best they could find in the way of cloth- 
ing, hats, shoes and blankets. 

But the soldier's life was not all hardship and suffering for 

Sixth Regiment. 333 

duty's sake. It would be interesting to tell how they whiled 
away the hours when not on duty by games and plays, and even 
theatrical performances which they improvised. Banjos, fiddles 
and accordeons were often heard in camp and on the march, and 
sometimes on the line of battle. Many and many are the humor- 
ous jokes and anecdotes that originated with the soldier, and he 
always enjoyed the ludicrous and ridiculous things that ^ere 
happening, even when under the fire of the enemy. One of my 
men, telling what he saw in one of our battles, says: "I tell you, 
Captain, there's a heap of funny things happens in battle if it 
were not for being so scared of getting killed." 

Much, too, might be written of the religious life that many 
of them led. Several instances occurred within our command 
in which the Bible or Testament in the breast-pocket turned the 
ball which otherwise would probably have caused a mortal wound. 
So, too, we can hope that at religious meetings in field and camp — 
camp-meetings, indeed — many a soldier learned how to turn the 
deadly shafts of sin. One specially solemn scene recurs to me 
as I write. It was when the regiment assembled at the regi- 
mental headquarters. Colonel Pender's tent, to witness his public 
profession of Christianity. 

I have spoken of it only as a regiment; no mention is made 
of individual acts of heroism or bravery — there were many ; the 
limits of this article would not permit it; nor is there any refer- 
ence to the few who behaved unworthily — and I feel justified in 
saying there were only a few. It would be unreasonable to claim 
that, of the two thousand men whose names were on the rolls, 
all were good and true. 

No boast is made for the regiment that it did more than its 
proportionate part, or that it engaged in more battles, or that 
it went further into the enemy's country, or that it lost in 
battle a greater per cent, of its men — a doubtful boast. 
Its record was made and must speak for itself. The only 
purpose of this sketch is to bring that record, in part, before the 
public, that it may have in condensed form what this regi- 
ment, in common with many others, did in the great struggle 

334 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

which made the Confederate soldier famous for all time — a struggle 
in which a most conspicuous part was borne by the North Caro- 
lina troops, not the least among which was the Sixth North 
Carolina Troops. 

At the first call her men volunteered for the war, and has- 
tened to the Northern border of Virginia to meet the enemy at 
the forefront. From July, 1861, to the closing scene at Appo- 
mattox, they shared the fortunes of the Army of Northern Vir- 
ginia, Their blood, in common with thousands of others, wet 
the soil of Manassas Plains on July 21st, 1861. During the fall 
and winter of that year they listened to the roar of guns and 
whistling of shells along the banks of the Potomac. 

They were at Yorktown and Eltham's Landing, Barhanis- 
ville, at Seven Pines and Fair Oaks, Gaines' Mill, Savage Sta- 
tion, White Oak Swamp, Malvern Hill, Harrison's Landing, 
Warrenton Springs, Thoroughfare Gap, Manassas Plains in Au- 
gust, 1862; at Ox Hill, Boonsboro, Sharpsburg, Fredericks- 
burg in December, 1862; at Fredericksburg and the Wilderness in 
May, 1863; at Winchester in June, 1863; at Gettysburg, Hagers- 
town, Bristow Station, Rappahannock Station, Mine Run, Bache- 
lor's Creek, near New Bern, N. C; Plymouth, Petersburg, Han- 
over Junction, Totapotamoi Creek, Cold Harbor, Lynchburg, 
Martihsburg, Monocacy, Washington, Winchester in July and 
September, 1864; at Fisher's Hill and Cedar Creek, at Burgess's 
Mill, and numerous other skirmishings and fightings from July, 
1861, to November, 1864; and the assault, as a forlorn-hope, on 
Fort Steadman on the morning of the 25th of March, 1865, and 
in the trenches at Petersburg, and on the retreat to Appomattox. 
Three times they went into the enemy's territory in Maryland 
and Pennsylvania, fording the Potomac six times. 

Theirs was not garrison or post-duty; it was their lot to fight 
the enemy in the field, to meet him in his advances, to check 
him when possible, and to follow him back and fight him 
in his own country and in his own strongholds; to contest inch 
by inch, day after day, week after week and month after month, 
the enemy's investment and gradual closing in on the lines 

Sixth Eegiment. 335 

around Petersburg and Richmond ; and when numbers prevailed 
over the thinned and thinning lines of the Army of Northern 
Virginia, to fall back and back with them, until finally hemmed 
in and compelled to surrender. 

Much of blood and treasure and many precious lives had been 
sacrificed, and, as it has been said, the cause was lost; that is to 
say, the Confederates, numbering all told, from first to last, about 
six hundred thousand men, with very limited resources, were, 
after four years of varying success and disaster, finally over- 
powered by armies numbering about two million and six hun- 
dred thousand men who had unlimited resources. But the prin- 
ciples of right, of truth and of duty, which urged those men to 
the fray, and sustained them in the long-drawn struggle, will 
never die. 

" If their memories part 
From our land and heart, 
'Twould be a wrong to them, and a shame for us." 

It is vain for any one to attempt to brand the Confederate 
soldiers or their leaders as traitors or to write them down as 
rebels. So-called statesmen — men of place and power, in the 
smallness of their souls — may speak of them as such ; demagogic 
politicians may roll such words under their tongues, the Govern- 
ment may provide a place to keep the " Rebellion Records," and 
statisticians may compile therefrom, monuments may dot those 
battlefields of " the rebellion " on which the " rebels " were 
defeated, but such efforts cannot succeed. The words " traitor " 
and " rebel " lose all their repulsiveness when applied to Lee 
and Jackson, or when coupled with the Confederate soldiers. 
Theirs was an heroic struggle for rights which the fathers 
contemplated and guarded when they declined to ratify or adopt 
the Constitution until it had been amended so as to expressly 
reserve " to the States respectively or to the people " "powers not 
delegated," as also "powers not prohibited " by it. For such rights 
they had, on the hustings and in the halls of CougresSj urged 
their plea, supported by unanswerable arguments based on the 

336 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Constitution and on the principles that underlie true republican 
government. But they were overruled by a majority of those 
who had sworn to support the Constitution, and further encroach- 
ments on their chartered rights were imminent, and, as a last 
resort, an appeal was made to arms. In that, as we have seen, 
Might, backed by overwhelming numbers, prevailed. The Con- 
federate soldier surrendered. His case is before the world. 
The rights which were guaranteed us, and the wrongs which 
drove us to war, have all been written down and published ; 
his heroism and his bravery, his courage and his devotion to his 
country, his State and his people, are all recorded in his deeds in 
four years of war; and, none the less,. in his submission after- 
terwards to laws that were forced upon us to humiliate us. 
His rights, his wrongs, his appeals to law and law-makers, and 
their denial of his rights, his final appeal to arms, his struggle, 
his defeat and his submission to power make up his case. He 
dreads not the scrutiny of candid historians or searchers after 
truth, nor does he fear the world's judgment on his record. 

Neill W. E,ay. 

Faybtteville, N. C. 


1. B. F. White, Captain, Co. F. 4. W. G. Tiirnei-, 2d Lieat, Co. E. 

S. Benj Ruel. Smith, Captain, Co. G. 5. William Preston Mangum, 2d Lieut., 

3. N. W. Ray, Captain, Co. D. co. B. 

6. George W. Houck, Private, Co. D. 


By major a. C. AVERY. 


Wheu Lincoln issued his proclamation calling on the State of 
North Carolina to furnish troops to suppress the so-called insur- 
rection in her sister States of the South, our people with one 
mind united in the determination to stand by our South- 
ern brethren rather than aid an invading foe, though marching 
under the flag of the nation. So soon as the tocsin of war was 
sounded the companies of the State militia, already organized 
and drilled, were rushed into the forts on our coast, till then garri- 
soned by a single non-commissioned officer quartered in each of 
the three. The first regiment organized was the First Volunteer 
or " Bethel" Regiment. The men were allowed to enlist for six 
months. After that a number of other regiments were formed 
of men enlisted for twelve months. 

Meantime the Legislature had met in extra session and had 
called a convention of the people to meet in May. Colonel 
Charles F. Fisher and others — men of broad views and cool 
heads — thinking that they foresaw a protracted and bloody 
struggle, prevailed upon the Legislature to pass a bill author- 
izing the formation of ten regiments of men enlisted for three 
years or the war, and empowered the Governor to appoint the 
regimental staff and company officers. Colonel Fisher was se- 
lected by Governor Ellis as Colonel of the Sixth, and began 
with characteristic energy to select men to aid him in recruiting 
ten companies. 

After the Democrats had acquired control of the State, he had 

338 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

been elected President of the North Carolina Railroad Company, 
Partisan spirit ran high, and for years, though one of the most 
competent, honoi;able and successful railroad presidents in the 
country. Colonel Fisher was bitterly abused and denounced. He 
met denunciation in one or two instances, as Southern men of 
that day often did, by challenging the author to mortal combat, 
and posting him as a coward when he declined to make amends. 
He was one of the most amiable of men, and, though quiet and 
undemonstrative, was affectionate to family and friends, and full 
of sympathy for suffering — the last man one would have thought 
liable to yield to this imperious custom of the times. With a 
grim determination to devote life and fortune to the cause he 
had espoused came the resolve to demand an investigation and 
settlement running through his entire administration of the af- 
fairs of the railroad company before leading his regiijnent to the 
scene of approaching conflicts. Consequently, after some of the 
companies were drilled for a time at Charlotte, all of them were 
brought together, organized and drilled as a regiment at Com- 
pany Shops, now Burlington. Honorable W. T. Dortch was 
first appointed Lieutenant-Colonel, and Charles E. Lightfoot, a 
Virginian, who had been a teacher at Tew's Military Academy 
at Hillsboro, was commissioned as Major. Major Lightfoot 
devoted himself to drilling the regiment while it was at Com- 
pany Shops. Colonel Fisher worked day and night, and divided 
his time between providing uniforms and equipments for his 
men, advancing out of his own means the money needed for the 
purpose, and reviewing, with a committee of directors, of which 
Mr. Edwin Holt was chairman, the railroad accounts during his 
administration of the affairs of the company. 

As the result of his restless energy, liberality and capacity for 
organization, the Sixth was the first of the ten war regiments 
ready for the field. Before it was fully equipped he was heard 
often to say, in response to some expression of fear by the young 
officers that they would be too late to participate in the struggle, 
that our people ought to be educated up to the idea of fighting 
long and desperately. He had graduated at Yale, knew the 

Sixth Regiment. 339 

Yankee character, and realized, as few of our leading men did, 
the incalculable advantage of having a navy sufficient to block- 
ade our ports, and opportunity not 6nly to ^manufacture war 
supplies in the immense establishments in the Eastern States, 
but to bring them without hindrance from abroad. 

On the day that Colonel Fisher reported his regiment ready 
to go to the front, our first war Governor, John W. Ellis, died, 
and the regiment commanded by his friend and townsman was 
taken to Raleigh to act as funeral escort. Honorable Henry T. 
Clark, being Speaker of the Senate, was ioaugurated as Gov- 
ernor, and W. T. Dortch, being the Speaker of the House of 
Commons, and next in the line of succession to Governor Clark, 
was induced to resign. Major Lightfoot became Lieutenant- 
Colonel, and Captain R. F. Webb, senior Captain, was commis- 
sioned Major. 

From Raleigh the regiment was sent to Richmond, where it 
was reviewed by President Davis, accompanied by General R. 
E. Lee, and ordered on the same day to embark on the train 
for Winchester, where Joseph E. Johnston was in command — 
with Jackson, Kirby Smith and Bee as subordinates. The 
regiment left Richmond with rations for a day only, and failed 
to get supplies in passing Manassas. Consequently at Strasburg 
and on the first march thence to Winchester the men for the 
first time had a foretaste of the privations in store for them 
during the years that were to follow. Except the two mountain 
companies (D and E), the men were without food from the time 
they reached Strasburg till the second morning after, when they 
had taken their place in the line north of Winchester. The 
regiment was assigned to Bee's Brigade, composed then of the 
Second and Eleventh Mississippi, the Fourth Alabama and the 
First Tennessee Regiments. The names of the officers are given in 
Volume I, page 1 97, of the "Roster of North Carolina Troops," and 
need not be inserted here. Colonel Fisher had R. M. McKinney 
commissioned Captain of Company A, and the writer of this 
First Lieutenant, but Captain McKinney was elected Colonel of 
the Fifteenth North Carolina Regiment before a vacancy occurred 

340 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

amongst the field officers, and the writer exchanged with Lieu- 
tenant Samuel S. Kirkland and took the same position in Com- 
pany E, in order to satisfy the men recruited by him. 

On the second morning after the regiment arrived at Win- 
chester drums began to beat, brigade after brigade fell into line 
and marched into the town of Winchester. All day we could 
bear the terrific old rebel yell as the men passed through the open 
field beyond the town ; but it was not till near night that we 
moved under orders to the same point, and were halted to hear 
for the first time a battle order, full of the Napoleonic ring. 
General Johnston announced, by having this order read to each 
regiment as it passed, that the President had called upon him to 
make a forced march to re-inforce General Beauregard at Ma- 
nassas, and save the country. The men forgot for the time the 
pangs of hunger and the sting of blistered feet, and moved off 
as if willing to run to the relief of their threatened comrades. 
The raw recruit never forgets, though he may not be able to de- 
scribe, the suffering endured in undergoing, the tortures of such 
a hardening process, so soon after enjoying the ease and luxury 
of home-life. It is the first test of his powers of physical en- 
durance, his strength of will and of constitution. After such 
an experience comes the camp fevers, invited by the depleted 
condition of the system, and then is witnessed in a physical 
sense the survival of the fittest. The regiment arrived at Pied- 
mont Station a short time before daylight, and the men fell rather 
than laid down amongst the thickly stacked shocks of a wheat 
field just harvested. We had not then begun to practice the 
apostolic plan of rubbing out the wheat for food, but some of 
us stretched on a hill-side upon shocks used as beds, covering 
head and all, and found in the morning that a heavy rain had 
washed out trenches under us and between the bundles. 

on to MANASSAS. 

The regiment had marched near the rear of the column and had 
separated from Bee's other regiments, and, as we rested in the field, 
it seemed for a time that we would be the last to embark on the 

Sixth Regiment. 341 

train from Piedmont Station for the scene of conflict. In vol- 
unteering to render an important service, Colonel Fisher won for 
his regiment the right to a place in advance of Kirby Smith's 
Brigade, and the opportunity, which proved fatal to him, to take 
part in the iirst great battle of the civil war. It was reported 
to him that a train had been derailed, a portion of it wrecked, 
and that the movements of the remaining regiments wouJd be 
greatly delayed. He sought the senior officer and told him that 
he himself was a railroad president and a railroad contractor, 
and had in his command civil engineers and enlisted men who 
had been employed in track-laying and section work. As a 
reward for hurriedly putting the track in order, the Sixth em- 
barked on the next train that left for Manassas. 

The first Confederate troops that opposed McDowell's flank- 
ing column, after it crossed Bull Run on the left of our line, 
was the command of Colonel Evans, composed of eleven com- 
panies of infantry and two field pieces, stationed in the woods, 
near the intersection of the Warrenton turnpike and the Sedley 
road. (See report of General Johnston, "Official Records," Series 
I, Volume XT, page 474). " Here (says the report referred to) 
he (Evans) was attacked by the enemy in immensely superior 
numbers, against which he maintained himself with skill and 
unshrinking courage. General Bee, moving toward the enemy, 
guided by the firing, with a soldier's eye selected the position 
near the Henry house and formed his troops upon it. They 
were the Seventh and Eighth Georgia, Fourth Alabama, Second 
Mississippi, and two companies of the Eleventh Mississippi, 
with Iraboden's Battery. Being compelled, however, to sustain 
Colonel Evans, he crossed the valley and formed on the right 
and somewhat in advance of his position. Here the joint forces, 
little exceeding five regiments, with six field pieces, held the 
ground against about fifteen thousand United States troops for 
about an hour, until, finding themselves outflanked by the con- 
tinually arriving troops of the enemy, they fell back to General 
Bee's first position, upon the line of which Jackson, just ar- 
riving, formed his brigade at Stanard's Battery. Colonel Hamp- 

342 NoETH Caeolina Teoops, 1861-'65. 

ton, who had by this time advanced with his legion as far as the 
turnpike, rendered efficient aid in maintaining the orderly char- 
acter of the retreat from that point, and here fell the gallant 
Lieutenant-Colonel Johnson, his second in command. * * 

"Orders were dispatched to hasten the march of General Holmes, 
Colonel Early and General Bonham's regiments. * * * 
Many of the broken troops, fragments of companies and indi- 
vidual stragglers were reformed and brought into action with the 
aid of my staff and a portion of General Beauregard's. Colonel 
(late Governor) Smith with his battalion and Colonel Hinton 
with his regiment were ordered up to re-inforce the right. * * 
* * Colonel Smith's cheerful courage had a fine influence, not 
only upon the spirit of our men, but upon the stragglers of the 
troops engaged. * * * '^y headquarters were now estab- 
lished at the Lewis house." 

Up to this time the Sixth North Carolina Regiment, having 
been detached and left behind the rest of Bee's command, which 
was now increased by the addition ofBartow's and another Georgia 
regiment, had not arrived on the field. Attention is here called 
to the fact that General Johnston reports Colonel (late Governor) 
Smith's Battalion in action while he was in the field, and before 
he established his headquarters at the Lewis house. General 
Johnston's report of the movements of Colonel Smith, and of the 
time when he engaged the enemy is quoted from to show, in 
connection with other undisputed facts, that the gallant old soldier 
was mistaken when he made certain charges against the Sixth, 
which are alluded to by Professor Hill in his history of North 
Carolina troops recently published. I shall rely on the foregoing 
report of General Johnston, General Beauregard's and Colonel 
Smith's own report, made when the smoke of the battle had just 
passed away, to disprove his statement made from memory years 
afterward?, and published in the Century Magazine. 

It was not until about two o'clock in the afternoon that Colonel 
Fisher reported with his regiment at the Lewis house, after Gen- 
eral Johnston had left Colonel Smith upon the field and estab- 
lished his headquarters there. Colonel Fisher halted his regi- 

Sixth Regiment. 343 

ment in a road running along a line of fence under the hill from 
the Lewis house, and had his horse crippled so as to force him 
to dismount in going up the hill or returning from the Lewis 
house, where he reported for orders. 

In confirmation of the foregoing statement as to the time of 
the arrival on the field, the following extract from General 
Johnston's report (at page 476) is relied on : 

"About two o'clock an officer of General Beauregard's Adju- 
tant-General's office galloped from Manassas to report that a 
United States army had reached the line of the Manassas Gap 
Railroad, was marching towards us, and was then but three miles 
from our left flank. * * * Within a half-hour the two 
regiments of General Bonham's Brigade (Capp's and Kershaw's) 
came up and were directed against the enemy's right, which he 
seemed to be strengthening. Fisher's North Carolina regiment 
was soon after sent in the same direction. About three o'clock, 
while the enemy seemed to be striving to outflank and drive 
back our left, and thus separate us from Manassas, General E. K. 
Smith arrived with three regiments of Elzey's Brigade. He was 
instructed to attack the right flank of the enemy, now exposed to 
us. Before the movement was completed he fell severely 
wounded. Colonel Elzey, at once taking command, executed it 
with great promptitude and vigor. General Beauregard rapidly 
seized the opportunity affijrded him, and threw forward his whole 
line. The enemy was driven back from the long contested hill, 
and victory was no longer doubtful." 

The time of Fisher's arrival on the battlefield is therefore fixed 
at two o'clock in the afternoon. The regiment advanced from a 
point a few hundred yards to the left of the Lewis house. Col- 
onel Fisher had reconnoitered in our front and his evident pur- 
pose was to lead us by the flank up a deep ravine, which could 
not be seen on account of intervening woods, by Rickett, who 
was in command of a section of Sherman's Battery, or by the 
Brooklyn Zouaves, who were supporting it, and who were sta- 
tioned on the hill above the upper end of the ravine. The regi- 
ment moved up this ravine by the flank. When the column 

344 NoBTH Carolina Tkoops, 1861-'65. 

reached a point near the upper end of the ravine, however, the 
enemy on the hill discovered its approach and opened with shrap- 
nel from the field pieces which had previously been shelling the 
hill near the Lewis house, but they were unable to depress their 
guns so as to reach us with the shrapnel, even after the regiment 
moved out of the gulley. Instead of moving forward into line 
all of the rear companies, a movement that might have been 
contemplated by Colonel Fisher but for the fire of the enemy, 
the men in front filed to the right and those nearer the center, 
including most of seven companies, moved forward into line 
without orders through a piece of woods till they came into 
an open field about eighty yards from the guns and the sup- 
porting line. Three companies (A, C and D), with a portion of 
a third company, with whom Lieutenant-Colonel Lightfoot re- 
mained, did not go into action, being cut oif in the rear (see Cap- 
tain White's diary). Lieutenant-Colonel Lightfoot took offense be- 
cause Colonel Fisher refused his request to allow him to give the 
commands to the regiment about the time it advanced towards the 
enemy. The soldiers delivered a well-aimed and fearfully de- 
structive fire into the line of the enemy's infantry, but especially 
into the artillerists. After firing a number of rounds, every 
soldier loading and firing at will, the enemy's guns were silenced, 
and but few muskets were being fired by the Zouaves. At this 
juncture Colonel Fisher was standing near Captain Isaac E. 
Avery, who was commanding the color company, when Captain 
Avery said to Colonel Fisher: "Colonel, don't you thiqk we 
ought to charge?" Colonel Fisher's reply was "Yes, Captain," 
and addressing the men, " Charge ! " Most of us charged straight 
up the face of the hill towards the field pieces, but Colonel 
Fisher, after giving this command, his last utterance, advanced 
obliquely towards the left, having discovered evidently at this 
early stage a reserve line of the enemy in the woods to the right 
and rear of the battery. In the rush his movements were unob- 
served and his body was found far in advance' of the point reached 
by any one on the left of our line, except Sergeant Hannah, of 

Sixth Regiment. 345 

Company A, who evidently advanced with him and fell by his 

When we reached Rickett's guns we found every horse killed 
and the ground covered with the bodies of the dead and wounded 
artillerists, and of the Brooklyn Zouaves, who were distinguished 
by their loose red pants. The writer distinctly recalls the fact 
that he saw upon the hill after the charge Major "Webb, Lieuten- 
ant (afterwards Captain) White, Captain Avery and his Lieu- 
tenants, Burns and McPherson, Captain (afterwards Colonel) 
Craige, Lieutenants Smith and Roseboro, Captain Parrish, Lieu- 
tenant Lockhart, and more distinctly his old college friend, Lieu- 
tenant Willie P. Mangum, who about five minutes later received 
a wound in the side which proved fatal. 

The men fought as brave Southern men, who had been drilled 
but a few weeks, would be expected to fight. They failed to 
keep a perfect alignment in distinct companies. The fact is re- 
called that Lieutenant Mangum, whose company (Bj was next 
in line to his (E), remarked to the writer that he was tired, and 
sat down beside or under the shadow of one of the deserted guns. 
About the same time Corporal Henry McGee, of Company E, 
was seen running down through the open field directly in rear of 
the guns, evidently shooting at some retreating Zouaves, when, 
after being called back, he reached the guns, he asked an officer 
where his brother was, and, on being told that he was near by, 
said : " If he had run like some of the skulkers, I would have 
felt like killing him." 

After the regiment had driven back the supports and captured 
the guns, a fire was opened on the men from the woods on the 
right and rear of the battery by soldiers dressed in gray uniform, 
and our men began to return the fire with spirit. At this junc- 
ture a number of the officers ordered the men to cease firing, 
telling them that they were firing on their friends, and called to 
the soldiers in the woods to cease firing; but the firing became 
heavier, and when no longer allowed to return it, the soldiers of 
the Sixth fell back and reformed in the open field from which 
Colonel Fisher had led them into the ravine. Here they missed 

346 NoKTH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

their brave Colonel, *and after they had reformed they were 
joined by Lieutenant-Colonel Lightfoot, who assumed command, 
and was ordered to move further to the left. We occupied our 
place in line in time to see the advance of Kirby Smith and Early 
on the left, and to observe from the hill the wavering of the 
Federal army as its line receded for a while in a series of curves, 
and finally broke and stampeded towards Center ville. We saw 
President Davis ride up to the lines and heard him speak, and 
then we moved forward till we were halted, at dark or afterward, 
in the midst of the knapsacks and guns strewn along the line of 

For many years the writer shared in the opinion generally 
entertained by the soldiers of the Sixth, who participated in the 
fight, that the men who fired upon us, and caused us to fall back, 
were Confederates ; but the story was not credited by the general 
officers, who could locate none of our troops in the skirt of woods 
referred to, and the rfegimental officers and men received no 
sympathy or assistance from Colonel Lightfoot, who had refused 
to follow Colonel Fisher in a fit of jealousy, and did not pretend 
to claim for the regiment the credit it deserved. It was because 
of the general criticism of his conduct that Governor Clark 
appointed Colonel W. D. Pender (afterwards Major- General) to 
succeed Colonel Fisher. When General Sherman wrote his 
memoirs it appeared from his report that a Massachusetts regi- 
ment in his brigade wore a gray uniform, and were mistaken by 
Confederates for their own men. He describes their position as 
that of the soldiers who occupied the woods to the left and front 
of the Sixth. The account given by General Sherman is the 
solution of what before had seemed an inexplicable mystery. 
We were fired upon by a regiment of the enemy, and not by 


Governor Smith went into the field as Colonel of the Forty- 
ninth Virginia, and no politician who entered the Confederate 
service won or deserved to win, from first to last, a better reputa- 

Sixth Regiment. 347 

tion for gallantry than he. He drew General D. H. Hill to 
him at Seven Pines by giving a unique evidence of his coolness — 
going into action at the head of his brigade with a large 
umbrella hoisted to protect him from the sun. With this preface, 
the writer proposes to prove by reports of Generals Beauregard, 
Johnston, and of Colonel Smith himself, that he shamefully mis- 
represented the Sixth Regiment in charging it with bad conduct 
at Manassas. 

We have seen that General Johnston reported the Sixth as 
going into battle after two o'clock, and after he had left Colonel 
Smith engaging the enemy, and had gone to the Lewis house. 
General Beauregard in his report (Official Records, Series I, 
Vol. II, pages 492 and 493) speaks of the line of battle as 
formed on the right by Bee, Evans and Jackson's Brigades 
(with artillery etc.) and "on the left by Gartrell's reduced ranks 
and Colonel Smith's Battalion, subsequently re-inforoed by Falk- 
ner's Second Mississippi Regiment of the Army of the Shenandoah, 
just arrived upon the field, and the Sixth (Fisher's) North Caro- 

It will not be questioned that General Beauregard knew what 
regiments "subsequently re-inforced " Colonel Smith's Battalion, 
as he said he did, and his account of the time of arrival of the 
Sixth and its going into action is corroborated by the extracts 
from General Johnston's report already given. 

What did Colonel Smith report to General Beauregard only 
ten days after the battle as to the conduct of the regiments sent 
to re-inforce him? On pages 155 and 552 of the volume con- 
taining Beauregard's report, already referred to, we find Colonel 
Smith's report, and on page 552, after mentioning the advance 
of a heavy column of the enemy that was about lo turn his left 
flank, he said : 

"At this critical moment two regiments came up, posted them- 
selves on my left, protected my flank, and opened upon the 
enemy at a distance of about eighty yards with admirable effect. 
I do not know the names of these regiments nor 'of their command- 
ing officers, and have to regret it, a^s it would afford me pleasure to 

348 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

name them, on account of the critical and efficient service rendered. 
From some persons acquainted with those regiments, I ascer- 
tained that one was from Mississippi, and I have an impression 
that the other was frcm, North Carolina." 

Governor Smith's report, made ten days after the battle, con- 
curs with the report of Beauregard and Johnston, and with the 
account given above by the writer, as to the time and place, and 
as to distance of the enemy from the Sixth Eegiment. In 
further corroboration of the claim that General Beauregard was 
not mistaken as to the identity of the regiment which rendered 
Colonel Smith such signal service, it may be stated that the 
Sixth was the only North Carolina regiment engaged or sta- 
tioned on the part of the line referred to. The Fifth and 
Twenty-first were the only other North Carolina regiments in 
Northern Virginia, and they were stationed on Bull Run, on the 
right of the line — some distance from the hill in front of the 
Lewis house. It is to be regretted that the attention of the old 
hero was not called to the cruel wrong he had done at a later 
date to the comrades whom he wished in 1861 to thank and to 
honor for saving him from retreat or ruin. 

If further evidence is needed to prove, not only that Fisher's 
regiment was not stampeded, but that it rendered service quite 
as important as that of Colonel Smith's Battalion, it will be 
found in the report of Adjutant- General Rhett, on page 569 of 
the volume already referred to, that the Sixth was among the 
regiments engaged in the fight, and his report of casualties, on 
page 570, which shows that the loss of the Sixth was one officer 
and twenty-two men killed and four officers and forty-six en- 
listed men wounded, and the loss of the Second Mississippi was 
four officers and twenty-one men killed, and three officers and 
seventy-nine men wounded, while the loss of the Forty-ninth 
Virginia (Colonel Smith) was one officer and nine men killed 
and one officer and twenty-nine men wounded. So it appears 
that both of the re-inforcing regiments suffered greater loss than 
the regiment they relieved. Of the four officers reported 
wounded, the writer recalls only the names of Lieutenant W. 

Sixth Eegiment. 349 

P. Mangum, who afterwards died, and Captain I. E. Avery, 
who received a flesh wound from a buckshot, which lodged in 
the calf of the leg, but remained with his company to the close 
of the day. The lamented Fisher was the first of our officers to 
lay down his life in the struggle. He fell like Bartow, gallantly 
leading his men, and North Carolina ought to have imitated 
the example of Georgia in doing honor to her brave son and 
perpetuating his fame by naming one of its counties for him. 
Mangum, who had presided over the United States Senate, and 
had been prominent as a presidential candidate, went down to 
his grave sorrowing for his only son. Like Webster he left no 
one to perpetuate his great and honored name. 


The Sixth Regiment spent rather an uneventful winter a few 
miles above Dumfries, at Camp Fisher, named in honor of our 
fallen Colonel. The condition of the Sixth when it left that 
camp for Fredericksburg in March, 1862, was a vindication of 
the wisdom of Governor Clark in appointing Pender to succeed 
Fisher. The rank and file shared in the pride of Pender, when 
on review at Fredericksburg, General Johnston declared it supe- 
rior in drill and discipline to any other regiment in the Army of 
Northern Virginia. Pender was still more elated at Yorktown 
when the regiment responded to the alarm signal at midnight 
by forming in battle array at the place assigned it on the line 
far ahead of any other regiment of Smith's Reserve Corps. 
These achievements were the first fruits of the patient training 
of the best "all-^ound" soldier, in the writer's opinion, in the 
Army of Northern Virginia — excepting only a few of our offi- 
cers of high rank. 

The march from Fredericksburg to Yorktown would have 
been devoid of special interest but for the terrible mortality 
amongst the new recruits, who were being stricken down with 
measles every day, as the troops moved to and then down the 
Peninsula. Of forty-six recruits taken to Company E by the 
writer, more then twenty fell by the way-side. 

350 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 


Whiting's Brigade was composed of the Sixth North Caro- 
lina, Second and Eleventh Mississippi and the Fourth Alabama 
Regiments — being the command of General Bee at Manassas, 
except the First Tennessee, which had been transferred to Hat- 
ton's (subsequently Archer's) Brigade, and formed a part of the 
Corps (as it was called) of Major-General Gustavus W. Smith. 
This command had been sent hurriedly to re-inforce Branch, 
near Hanover Junction ; but had returned and spent the night 
before the battle of Seven Pines, or (as the Federals called it) 
Fair Oaks, in a camp near Richmond. 

It moved to the junction of the New Bridge and Nine Mile 
roads. (See General Johnston's report, "War Records," Series 
I, Vol. XI, Part I, page 933 ) . Major-Generals Hill and Long- 
street attacked the left of General Keyes' command at two o'clock 
p. M. of May 31, 1862, after waiting from early morning, 
about six hours, for Huger to get into the position assigned him 
by Johnston's orders. (See "War Records," Series I, Vol. XI, 
Part I, page 940). Owing to the peculiar condition of the 
atmosphere neither the fire of musketry nor of cannon by Long- 
street's and Hill's commands could be heard by Smith's Corps, 
which was accompanied by President Davis and General Joseph 
E. Johnston. At length Major Jasper Whiting, of Johnston's 
staff, was sent to the right, and returning just before four o'clock 
p. M., reported that the battle was raging on the right. 

The first regiment put in motion on the Confederate left was 
the Sixth, under Pender. He was ordered tp press forward 
rapidly, with the assurance that he would be supported, but was 
led to believe that the enemy was not very near to his front. 
Hence he moved into the dense woods, a short distance from us, 
by the flank, until the head of the column reached a road, when 
the enemy's picket fired into him. The regiment was halted 
instantly and ordered forward into line at double-quick. Though 
the movement was executed in dense woods, the regiment had, in 

Sixth Regimejst. 351 

a few seconds, formed a perfect line along the road, and in the 
shortest possible time thereafter Company K, Captain Lea, was 
thrown out as skirmishers, and was advancing at a quick-step, 
followed by the regiment in supporting distance. 

Though a number of men in the line of battle were killed 
and wounded, the company of skirmishers was not driven back 
upon the main line until the regiment reached the woods, where 
a part of Couch's command was said to have been in camp near 
Fair Oaks Station. The advance of the regiment was not, how- 
ever, checked for a moment there, though wistful eyes were cast 
at the full haversacks and boiling pots as it passed through the 
deserted camp of Couch. Pender, true to his training, obeyed 
orders by moving straight to the front, trusting to his superiors 
for support. The regiment passed rapidly over the road leading 
to Couch's center (see Couch's report, "War Records," Series 
I, Vol. XI, Part I, page 880), and advanced several hundred 
yards east of it, when a sergeant called the writer's attention to 
the fact that several Federal flags were visible to our left and 
rear, the Federal regiments being so posted that they could in 
five minutes have moved rapidly down the road which the Sixth 
had crossed and cut it off from retreat or support. The writer, 
whose position as First Lieutenant of the color company, threw 
him near to Pender, said: "Colonel, there are three Yankee 
flags." Without replying, Colonel Pender said, in a low tone, 
" Sergeant Bason, lower your flag." Then with the ringing voice, 
which could always be heard, and was always heeded, he gave 
the command, "By the left flank, file left, double-quick!" This 
was the only possible combination of commands that could have 
saved us from capture, and they were molded into a single order 
without hesitating for an instant. But the danger of capture or 
annihilation was not over still. No supporting troops were in 
sight. The enemy's regiments — the head of Sumner's Corps, 
which had crossed the Chickahominy, but had not yet effected 
a junction with Keyes — were resting in column by company to 
our left and rear in an open field, with a swamp on their right. 
Whether they had mistaken the Sixth for Federals, or had 

352 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

determined to allow it to go unchallenged into danger, they were 
without doubt unprepared for Pender's next movement. When 
the center of the regiment reached the road leading towards Fair 
Oaks— without halting — Pender gave the command, "By the 
right flank, charge bayonets!" Meantime, as we were moving 
double-quick towards the road, Pender had said to his Adjutant: 
"Go rapidly to the rear and hasten the advance of the other 
regiments." When the regiment had charged within about one 
hundred yards of the enemy, still massed in column by company. 
Colonel Pender gave the order to halt and to deliver .a fire into 

This well directed fire threw the columns of Sumner into con- 
fusion and gave Pender time to fall back a short distance and 
form on the right of the Mississippi regiments, which had now 
come up. In a few moments the regiment went forward, with 
the Mississippians on its left, to a point within eighty yards of 
the enemy, and in the open field. This position it held, deliver- 
ing a steady fire until it was almost dark, and until the com- 
mands of Pettigrew, Hatton and Hampton had made unsuccess- 
ful attacks on the enemy posted in the swamps to the left of 
Pender. Jefferson Davis witnessed the movements of Pender's 
Regiment, and when the battle was over, said to him: "Your 
commission as Brigadier bears date of to-day. I wish that I 
could give it to you upon the field." Pender afterwards said to 
his friend, General Stephen D. Lee: "I could have coveted no 
greater honor than to be promoted by the President on the field 
of battle.'" 

The attack on the left was not a success. General Hatton was- 
killed. General Hampton wounded, General Pettigrew wounded 
and captured, while the aggregate loss of the Confederates was 
nearly twelve hundred killed and wounded. The Sixth North 
Carolina won the proud distinction of being the first to engage 
the enemy and the last to leave the field. 

Sixth Regiment. 353 

the sixth on the second day at gettysburg. 

Visitors who pass over the historic field of Gettysburg are 
impressed with the accounts by guides of how Sickles turned the 
tide by advancing without orders at a certain stage of the battle. 
It seems to be a well-attested, though not a well-known fact, 
that General Lee had courteously requested Lieutenant-General 
A. P. Hill to consent to his giving an order directly to Pender. 
Major Engelhard, Pender's Adjutant, stated that just before he 
was wounded he said: "It is about time for me to move in 
obedience to General Lee's order." Major Engelhard under- 
stood that the movement was intended to anticipate and check- 
mate the subsequent advance of Sickles. But the exact purport 
of the order was known only to Pender and Lee, and was never 
disclosed to another. Well might Lee say, "I looked to him as 
the successor of Jackson," if he believed that his untimely fall 
prevented the execution of plans that, if carried out, would have 
changed the result of the battle and given to the Confederacy a 
proud position amongst the nations of the earth. 

Column after column of newspapers have been filled, and page 
upon page of histories and romances have been printed to prove, 
on the one hand, that Pickett's Division was entitled to all the 
glory of the desperate charge upon the heights at Gettysburg, on 
the third and last day of the fight, or on the other hand, that 
some of the soldiers of the other twelve States of the Con- 
federacy could be allowed to divide the honor with them, with- 
out dimming their deservedly bright record. Those who have 
studied the field and fitted the testimony to the ground know 
full well that the point where Satterfield, of the Fifty-fifth 
North Carolina, fell was further to the front than the utmost 
point reached by the most venturous of Pickett's men by a 
number of yards. True a few of Pickett's men crossed a por- 
tion of the rock wall which projected in front of other parts of 
it, but, after crossing, failed to keep in line with Davis' Brigade 
and protect its right flaiik as it marched up to the mouths of 
musket and cannon which were being fired from behind the 

354 North Caeolina Teoops, 1861-65. 

high and unbroken rock wall near the crest of the hill and on 
Pickett's left. 

However this dispute may be settled by future historians, 
another controversy, which has arisen as to the honor, not simply 
of crossing, but of entering and occupying Cemetery Heights on 
the second day, ought to be settled without further delay, by 
admitting that Hays' (Louisiana) and Avery's (North Carolina) 
Brigades are entitled to share the glory equally. 

Colonel Tate contended that the Sixth Eegiment was the only 
organized command that crossed the wall and occupied the 
trenches behind it, though accompanied by a small squad of 
Louisianians of Hays' Brigade. Colonel H. C. Jones, the dis- 
tinguished historian of the Fifty-seventh North Carolina, states 
positively that his command and the Twenty-first, or the whole 
brigade, commanded by Avery, advanced in an unbroken line 
and drove the enemy from their intrenchments. The historian 
who contributed the article on the Louisiana troops for the Con- 
federate history, recently published under the editorial super- 
vision of General Clement A. Evans, contends, upon represen- 
tations of Hays' men, that they were the only organized 
command that occupied the heights, though a small squad of the 
North Carolinians joined them. 

Captain J. A. McPherson (then First Lieutenant), of Company 
E, Sixth North Carolina, who was acting as Aid-de-camp to 
Colonel Avery, gives the following account ^of the movements 
and conduct of the brigade: 

"Colonel I. E. Avery commanded Hoke's Brigade, composed 
then of the Sixth, Twenty-first, Twenty-seventh (the Fifty- 
fourth having been detached and left in charge of the prisoners 
captured at Winchester). This brigade attacked a portion of 
Reynold's command intrenched, with a strong fence in front of 
the trenches, and after marching across an open wheat field without 
faltering, drove Reynolds from his position and through the town 
to the wall on Cemetery Hill. Here brave Captain J. H. Burns, 
of the Sixth, was killed (in fulfillment of a wish often expressed) 
instantly by a ball piercing the brain. 

Sixth Regiment. 355 

"The brigade halted in a wheat field near and to the right of 
the Gulp house, where it remained all night and until just before 
sundown on the next day, when it was ordered to move forward 
with Hays' Brigade and attack Cemetery Heights. 

"In this attack Colonel Avery led the brigade on horseback, 
being the only mounted man of the command, until he fell from 
his horse mortally wounded by a ball which passed through his 
neck and shoulder. After falling from his horse he took from 
his pocket a pencil and piece of paper, on which he wrote in 
indistinct characters: 'Tell my father I fell with my face to the 
enemy.' * * His command moved forward and scaled the 
heights." * * * 

"In June, 1896, I visited Gettysburg in company with Judge 
A. C. Avery, and located the place where Colonel Avery fell, 
which was marked by order of the Commissioners." 


In 1890 the writer addressed a letter to General Early, asking 
■ what troops scaled the walls on Cemetery Heights, to which he 
received the following reply : 

"Lynchburg, Va., July 11, 1890. 
"Dear Sir: — Your letter of the 4th has been received, and 
in reply I have to inform you that at the close of the 2d of July, 
1863, at Gettysburg, both Hoke's Brigade, under the command 
of Colonel Isaac E. Avery, and Hays' Louisiana Brigade at- 
tacked the enemy's works on Cemetery Hill, and entered them. 
Of course the Sixth North Carolina Regiment entered the works, 
but it was along with the rest of the brigade. Hays' Brigade 
brought oflF four battle flags and one hundred prisoners captured 
from the enemy. The conduct of Hoke's Brigade, under Col- 
onel Avery, was all that could be expected of it, and the Sixth 
North Carolina Regiment behaved well, as did the rest of the 
brigade. It was frequently the case that the men and ofBcers of 
a regiment, not being able to see what other troops did, imagined 
that no other troops were where they fought. In the twenty- 

356 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

seventh volume, second part, of the books entitled, ' War of the 
Eebellion: Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies,' 
published under the authority of Congress, is contained my 
official reports of the campaign in 1863, including the battle of 
Gettysburg. As it may not be accessible to you, I send you a 
copy of my statement in regard to the attack on Cemetery Hill 
on the second day. This is all the information that I can give 
yon in regard to that aifair. 

" Very truly yours, 

"J. A. Early." 
A. C. Avery, Esq. 

The extract sent by General Early is as follows, viz. : 

"Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies," Vol- 
ume XXVII, Part II, pages 470-'71. 

extracts from report of general J. A. EARLY. 

Extract First: "Having been subsequently informed that the 
attack would begin at 4 o'clock p. M., I directed General Gordon ' 
to move his brigade to the railroad, in rear of Hays and Avery, 
Smith being left, under J. E. B. Stuart, to guard the York road. 
The fire from the artillery having been opened on the right and 
left at 4 o'clock, and continued for some time, I was ordered by 
General Ewell to advance upon Cemetery Hill with my two 
brigades that were in position as soon as General Johnson's 
Division, which was on the left, should become engaged at the 
wooded hill on the left, which it was about to attack, informa- 
tion being given us that the advance would be general, and made 
also by Rodes' Division and Hill's Division on my right. 

"Accordingly, as soon as Johnson became warmly engaged, 
which was a little before dusk, I ordered Hays and Avery to 
advance and carry the works on the heights in front. These 
troops advanced in gallant style to the attack, passing over the 
bridge in front*of them under a heavy artillery fire, and then 
crossing a hollow between that and Cemetery Hill, and moving 
np this hill in the face of at least two lines of infantry posted 

Sixth Eegiment. 357 

behind stone and plank fences ; but these they drove back, and 
passing over all obstacles, they reached the crest of the hill and 
entered the enemy's breastworks, crossing it, getting possession 
of one of the batteries. But no attack was made on the imme- 
diate right, as was expected, and not meeting with support from 
that quarter, these brigades could not hold the positions that they 
had attained, because a very heavy force of the enemy was 
turned against them from that part of the line which the divis- 
ions on the right were to have attacked, and these two brigades 
had, therefore, to fall back, which they did with comparatively 
slight loss, considering the nature of the ground over which they 
had passed and the immense odds opposed to (hem, and Hays' 
Brigade brought off four stands of captured colors. At the 
same time these brigades advanced, Gordon's Brigade was ordered 
forward to support them, and did advance to the position from 
which they had moved, but M'as halted here because it wag ascer- 
tained that no advance vvas made on the right, and it was evident 
that the crest of the hill could not be held by my two brigades, 
supported by. this one without any other assistance, and that the 
attempt would be attended with a useless sacrifice of life. Hays' 
and Hoke's Brigades were reformed on the line previously occu- 
pied by them, and on the right and left of Gordon respectively. 

"In this attack, Colonel Avery, of the Sixth North Carolina 
Regiment, commanding Hoke's Brigade, was mortally wounded. 
With this affair the fighting on July the 2d terminated." 

Extract Second (page 473): "The conduct of my troops during 
the entire campaign, on the march as well as in action, was deserv- 
ing of the highest commendation. To Brigadier Generals Hays 
and Gordon I was greatly indebted for their cheerful, active and 
intelligent co-operation on all occasions, and their gallantry in 
action was eminently conspicuous. I had to regret the absence 
of Brigadier General Hoke, who was severely wounded in the 
action of May 6th at Fredericksburg, and had not recovered, 
but his place was worthily filled by Colonel Avery, of the Sixth 
North Carolina Regiment, who fell mortally wounded while 
gallantly leading his brigade in the charge on Cemetery Hill at 

358 North Cakolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

Gettysburg on the afternoon of July the 2d. In his death the 
Confederacy lost a good and brave soldier." 

All of the eye-witnesses concur in stating that the Sixth, com- 
manded by Major (afterwards Lieutenant-Colonel) S. McD. Tate, 
was gallantly led, and engaged in a hand-to-hand encounter with 
the enemy intrenched behind the wall on the heights, in which 
men were not only killed by bayonets and pistol shots, but were 
clubbed by muskets and ramrods of artillerists. A letter from 
W. A. Hal], of Company K, states that a body of Hays' Lou- 
isiana troops planted their flag upon one of the enemy's guns 
on the heights, and about the same time the color-bearer of the 
Sixth was knocked senseless while planting his colors on another 
gun in the Federal line. 

Summing up all of the evidence, there is no room for doubt 
that the North Carolinians commanded by Colonel Avery, one 
and all, covered themselves with glory. If the Sixth encoun- 
tered the line where it was strongest, it was their good fortune 
to find the opportunity for which all alike were asking, to show 
their devotion to the cause. It is equally true that the veteran 
command of Hays, which had so often marched, side by side to 
victory, with their Carolina friends, did not falter in the face of 
the terrible hail of shot and shell that rained upon them from 
Cemetery Hill, as they moved in an unwavering line across the 
memorable field to the harvest of death. 

The Sixth Regiment was on the left of the Confederate line, 
and hence was not in the thickest of the third day's fight. It 
enjoyed again, however, proud distinction in being a part of the 
only command that stormed and occupied any portion of the 
enemy's line along the heights, from the beginning to the end 
of the three days' struggle. 

The writer has been provoked to write an account of the con- 
duct of the Sixth at Gettysburg by reading the Louisiana his- 
tory. He feels that he has so completely answered the article 
of Governor Smith, that the old hero, if alive, would concede 
that he was mistaken. He believes now that if the writer who 
claimed a monopoly of the honor of storming Cemetery Heights 

Sixth Regiment. 359 

for Louisiana will calmly examine the "War Records" and listen 
to proof and reason, he will show that he is animated by the 
liberal and chivalrous spirit of such representatives of his State 
as Beauregard, Hays, Gibson and Nichols, by according to the 
comrades of Hays equal honor for the success achieved under 
his leadership. 

A. C. Avery. 


July 2, 1900. 


1. Junius L. Hill, Lieut. -Colonel. 

2. A. yi. Sigmon, Private, Co. K. 

John Hughes, Captain and Assistant 
Q. M. 


By captain J. S. HARRIS, Company B, 

The Seventh Kegiment North Carolina State Troops was en- 
listed for the period of the war, and organized at Camp Ma- 
son, Alamance county, during the month of August, 1861. 

Reuben P. Campbell, of Iredell county, was the Colonel; 
Ed. Graham Haywood, of "VVake county, Lieutenant-Colonel ; 
E. D. Hall, of New Hanover county. Major ; First Lieutenant 
John E.Brown, Company D, Adjutant ; Dr. Wesley M. Camp- 
bell, of Iredell, Regimental Surgeon, and Dr. W. E. White, of 
Mecklenburg county, was the Assistant Surgeon, all to take 
rank from the 16th of May, 1861. Neither Commissary nor 
Quartermaster was assigned the regiment at first, though officers 
were temporarily detailed for duty in these departments. 

The regiment' was coniposed of the following ten companies, 
to-wit : 

Company A — Iredell and Alexander Counties — Captain, Ju- 
nius L. Hill. 

Company B — Cabarrus County — Captain, Robert S. Young. 

Company C — New Hanover County — Captain, Robert B. 

Company D — MeoUenburg County — Captain, 'William Lee 

Company E — Nash County — Captain, A. J. Taylor. 

Company F — Roivan County- — Captain, J. McLeod Turner. 

Company G — Wake County — Captain, Hiram Witherspoon. 

Company H — Cabarrus County — Captain, James G. Harris. 

Company I — Iredell County — Captain, James R. McAulay. 

Company K — Alexander County — Captain, Martin H. Peo- 

362 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

On the 21st of August, 1861, the Seventh Regiment North 
Carolina State Troops was mustered into the military service of 
the State of North Carolina, and each soldier was paid a bounty 
of fifteen dollars. Captain A. Myers was the disbursing officer, 
and it required nearly thirteen thousand dollars to pay off the 

Colonel Campbell was a professional soldier, a graduate of 
West Point, and had served with distinction in the Mexican war. 
Possessed of fine administrative abilities, he introduced and 
practically enforced the discipline of the regular army. Upon 
assuming command, he remarked to his officers that he was not 
confident of his ability to control a thousand men, but said he, 
"I think I can govern forty officers." 

Lieutenant-Colonel Haywood was a man of fine personal ap- 
pearance, just in the prime of life; was possessed of a magnifi- 
cent voice and brilliant intellect. As a tactician, he was skillful, 
and under his training the regiment rapidly acquired proficiency 
in the various evolutions of battalion drill. 

Two companies, A and F, were armed with rifles, the others 
with the smooth-bore Springfield muskets. 


Early Wednesday morning, August 28th, the Seventh Regi- 
ment embarked by rail for the Eastern part of the State, and 
reached New Bern the following morning at 5 o'clock, and was 
assigned quarters in the Fair Grounds. On Friday, August 30th, 
the regiment was regularly mustered into the military service of 
the Conftderate States of America (more properly speaking, 

On Monday, September 2d, the regiment marched to Fort 
Lane, on Neuse River, below town, and was busily employed on 
the river defenses until Sunday, September 8th, when it was 
taken by rail to Carolina City. Two companies, D and E, were 
detached and sent to Hyde county under command of Major 
Hall. The remaining companies went by boat to Bogue Island 
and encamped some four miles below Fort Macon. The Twen- 

Seventh Regiment. 363 

ty-sixth Regiment North Carolina Volunteers, Colonel Z. B. 
Vance commauding, and Captain Pender's Battery were on duty 
when we arrived on the island. Camp and picket duties em- 
ployed our time until the 2d of October, when the regiment 
recrossed the sound and encamped near Carolina City. Early 
in December Colonel Campbell moved his command up the road 
to Newport and constructed winter-quarters, and the companies 
on detached service rejoined the regiment. 

On the 5th of March, 1862, the Seventh Regiment was taken 
by rail to New Bern and encamped in the Fair Grounds until 
Wednesday evening, March 12th, when it was reported that the 
enemy were coming up the river, and dispositions were accord- 
ingly made to have the troops in position to meet them. 


The Seventh and Thirty-third Regiments, encamped in town, 
crossed the river at an early hour Thursday morning, March 
13th, and were placed in reserve some two miles in the rear of 
the main line, at a point where the public road from Beaufort 
crosses the Atlantic & North Carolina Railroad. Colonel 
Campbell was intrusted by General Branch with the command of 
his right wing, and was assigned the duty of guarding the river 
from Otter Creek to Fort Thompson, a distance of several miles. 
In consequence of vastly superior numbers, and the advantages 
afforded the enemy in landing troops at almost any point on the 
river shore, so as to take his line in reverse, Colonel Campbell, 
in obedience to orders, retired to the Fort Thompson breastworks. 
The Seventh Regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel E. G. Haywood 
commanding, was ordered from the reserve and was posted on 
the main line, one company (F) on the left, and the other nine 
companies immediately on the right of the Beaufort road, and 
about half-way from Fort Thompson to the railroad — the dis- 
tance from the Fort to the railroad being about one mile. 

At an early hour on Friday morning, March 14th, final dispo- 
fiitious were made to receive the advancing foe. Rain had fallen 
in showers the previous night, and the early morning was obscured 

364 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

by a fog, so much so that a party of mounted men approached 
almost unobserved within musket-range, evidently with the pur- 
pose of locating the lines. This party was fired upon by one of 
Latham's guns on the Beaufort road. This shot served as a signal 
for the Federal advance, and shortly thereafter they appeared in 
force on the Beaufort road and opened fire immediately in front 
of the Seventh Pegiment. They were promptly responded to 
with musketry and artillery, and with such effect as to arrest 
their advance, and in a short while the firing was general along 
the line to the river. Finding this part of the line to be well 
defended, the enemy extended his line and advanced up the rail- 
road on the opposite side. The intrenchments on that side were 
located higher up the road, so that when the enemy's skirmishers 
arrived on a line with the breastworks from the river to the rail- 
road, they were enabled to deliver a flank fire into the troops (the 
militia battalion of Colonel H. J. B. Clark) on the opposite side, 
under which they gave away, and all efforts to rally them were 
unavailing. This advantage enabled the enemy to advance 
troops through an undefended open ditch with but little expo- 
sure, and the Thirty-fifth Regiment North Carolina Troops, like- 
wise assailed in front and flank, gave way and did not afterwards 
return to the fight. Flushed with success, the enemy pushed 
along the vacant works, and the Seventh was the next in turn 
to feel the brunt of his attack, and it, too, was forced to retire, 
but not in confusion, for it was quickly rallied, and advancing 
with fixed bayonets, it gallantly drove the Federals over the 
breastwork's, recovering two of Brem's guns that had fallen into 
their hands. The brave Major Hall led the charge, and did 
much to inspire the confidence and courage of the Seventh, for 
the first time so sorely tried. The regiment continued to hold 
its position without re-inforcements until near noon, when it was 
again assailed from the same direction by an overwhelming force, 
and the entire line, being exposed to an enfilade fire, gave way, 
and the field was. hopelessly lost. 

Referring to the regiment on this occasion, General Branch 
said : i " The brave Seventh met them with the bayonet and drove 

Seventh Regiment. 365 

them headlong over the parapet, inflicting heavy loss on them 
as they fled; but soon returning with heavy re-inforcements, not 
less than five or six regiments, the Seventh was obliged to yield, 
falling back slowly and in order." 

In this ill-fated afiair, its first fight, the regiment sustained a 
loss of six killed, fifteen wounded and thirty missing. 

Along with General Branch's command it retreated to Kinston 
and remained about a week, when the command was taken by 
rail to Falling Creek, seven miles above Kinston. 

branch's brigade organized. 

On the 31st of March, 1862, the Second Brigade, consisting 
of the Seventh, Colonel Campbell; Thirty-seventh, Colonel 
Charles C. Lee ; Eighteenth, Colonel James D. Eadcliffe; Twenty- 
eighth, Colonel James H. Lane, and the Thirty-third, Colonel C. 
M. Avery, all North Carolina regiments, was organized, and Brig- 
adier-General L. O'B. Branch was assigned to the command, and 
on the following day he returned to his former encampment 
below Kinston. 

While here Major E. D. Hall was promoted to Colouel of the 
Forty-sixth Regiment, and Captain J. L. Hill, Company A, 
succeeded him as Major of the Seventh. Adjutant John E. 
Brown was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel of the Forty-second 
Regiment, and Lieutenant F. D. Stockton, of Company F, suc- 
ceeded him as Adjutant. On the 1st of May, Colonel Camp- 
bell, in obedience to orders from brigade headquarters, proceeded 
with his regiment. Captain Bunting's Battery and a train of 
wagons to Trenton for the purpose of collecting and bringing 
back provisions for the use of the troops, but upon reaching 
his destination the command was recalled. 


On Sunday, May 4th, 1862, Branch's Brigade went by rail to 
Goldsboro, thence by way of Weldon, Petersburg and Richmond 
to Gordonsville, Va., reaching the latter place on the night of the 

366 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

5th, and remained until about the 16th, when the command was 
ordered towards the Valley of Virginia, but before reaching 
the foot-hills of the Blue Ridge it was ordered back to Gordons- 
ville, and from there by rail to Hanover Court Hoiise, and did 
picket duty for some days in that locality. 


The battle of Hanover Court House was fought on the even- 
ing of Tuesday, May 27th, between the Federal advance, under 
Generals Fitz John Porter and Sedgewick, and Branch's Brigade, 
Latham's Battery, and two infantry regiments, temporarily at- 
tached. Twelfth North Carolina and a Georgia regiment. 

In this action the Seventh Regiment was held in reserve, and 
though at no time actively engaged, it was nevertheless exposed 
to the enemy's fire (a severe test of the metal of any troops) 
without the opportunity of returning it. In obedience to orders, 
General Branch fell back to Ashland during the night, and the 
Seventh Regiment constituted his rearguard. In this affair the 
regiment sustaiued a loss of two killed, four wounded and two 
missing. General Branch said in his report: "A cautious at- 
tempt was made by the enemy to follow, but a single volley from 
the rearguard of the Seventh arrested it." During the early 
days of June Branch's Brigade encamped on the Brook turn- 
pike, three and one-half miles northwest of Richmond, and 
remained until sunset Wednesday, June 25, 1862, when, in 
obedience to orders from army headquarters, it marched up 
Brook turnpike to the vicinity of "Half Sink" bridge, and 
bivouacked until morning. Thursday, June 26th, at 10 o'clock 
A. M., the brigade was ordered to cross, and the Seventh, march- 
ing at the head of the column, crossed the Chickahominy and 
directed its march down stream. Three companies. A, C and 
F, under command of Lieutenant-Colonel Haywood, were ad- 
vanced to discover and dislodge the enemy's picket. When 
nearing the Virginia Central Railroad, Colonel Haywood's com- 
mand encountered and dispersed the enemy's advanced troops. 

Seventh Regiment. 367 

some two hundred strong, capturing from them a flag — the first 
trophy of the day — before any other brigade of General Lee's 
army had crossed the Chickahominy, and started MeClellan on 
"that retreat in which he found no shelter until under cover of 
the guns of his shipping." Continuing the advance, Colonel 
Haywood's command again encountered the enemy's sharp- 
shooters beyond Atlee's Station and drove them back. The 
movements of Branch's Brigade uncovered Meadow Bridge, and 
General A. P. Hill crossed and drove the enemy from his in- 
trenched camp at Mechanicsville. Late in the afternoon Branch's 
Brigade, marching by a different road, reached the scene of con- 
flict. After the repulse at Mechanicsville the enemy retired to 
a strong position at Ellyson's Mill, where the Confederates re- 
newed the attack, but failed to dislodge him. Branch's Brigade 
was ordered to the front, and went some distance, when it was 
halted, and Colonel Campbell was directed to hold his regiment 
in readiness for an immediate advance. Later the regiment was 
placed in position on the left of the road and remained over 

Next morning, Friday, June 27th, while awaiting orders to 
advance, it was learned that the enemy had abandoned his posi- 
tion and was in full flight. Pursuit was immediately given, and 
in the afternoon the battle was renewed beyond Gaines' Mill. 
The Seventh formed to the left of the road, and under the lead 
of the fearless Campbell pushed forward through a lake of 
water and up a long wooded slope. Companies A and F were 
advanced as skirmishers and met with such stout resistance as 
to check their progress. 

Seeing that Turner and Knox were hard pressed, Captain 
Young, of Company B, called on his men to go to their assist- 
ance, and this they did by moving cheerfully forward under a 
heavy fire and rendered timely aid in forcing the enemy out of 
the road and from the fence on top of the hill. As the main 
line advanced the skirmishers were directed to form on the right 
of the regiment, and for some time it maintained this advanced 
position against superior odds. Not being supported, as he ex- 

368 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

pected, and suffering frightful loss, Colonel Campbell ordered 
the regiment to fall back to a less exposed position, and the 
three skirmishing companies on the right not falling back at the 
same instant, became separated from the regiment, and, under 
the command of Lieutenant- Colonel Haywood, they were as- 
signed by General A. P. Hill's order to another part of the line, 
and were under fire to the close of the action. The other seven 
companies, under Colonel Campbell, were sent to charge a bat- 
tery on the right of the road, and, after moving the required 
distance. Colonel Campbell advanced his regiment through a 
swamp and over fallen timber up the deadly slope, intent upon 
fulfilling his mission. The color-bearer, Henry T. Fight, of 
Company F, had advanced but a little way when he was se- 
riously wounded and let the colors fall. Then Corporal James 
A. Harris, of Company I, caught them up and bore them a 
short distance, when he, too, received a disabling wound. Colo- 
nel Campbell then seized the flag, and advancing some twenty 
paces in front of his men, ordered them not to fire but to follow 
him. When within less than a stone's throw of the deadly guns, 
the heroic Campbell was pierced by an enemy's bullet and 
instantly killed. Lieutenant Duncan C. Haywood, of Company 
E, promptly seized the flag, and in the effort to bear it forward, 
he in turn lost his life, and seeing the utter impossibility of cap- 
turing the battery, the regiment beat a hasty retreat. Unwilling 
that the flag should fall into the enemy's hands, private Nichol- 
son, of Company H, caught the end of the broken staff and 
trailed it after him down the hill, and, from Colonel Haywood's 
report, it was borne from the field by Corporal Geary, of Com- 
pany C. The flag had on it the marks of thirty-two bullets, 
indicating in some measure the fearful dangers to which the 
gallant Seventh was exposed in attempting to accomplish an 
impossible result. 

Following is a list of officers killed and wounded in this 
action : 

Killed — Colonel Reuben P. Campbell*; Lieutenant Duncan 

* Colonel Campbell was born in Iredell county, N. C, April 16, 1818, and graduated at 
West Pomt, June 23,1840; entered the service as Second Lieutenant of Cavalry : was 
promoted Captain of Company B, Second Dragoons. He was distinguished for gallant 
and meritorious conduct in the Mexican war, and resigned his commission to take part 
with his native State m behalf of the South. 

Seventh Regiment. 369 

C. Haywood, Company E ; Lieutenant William A. Closs, Com- 
pany E ; Captain Martin H. Peoples, Company K ; Lieutenant 
Joseph C. Miller, Company K. 

"Wounded — Captain Eobert B. McRae, Company C ; Lieu- 
tenant William J. Kerr, Company D ; Captain James R. Mc- 
Aulay, Company I. 

The number of enlisted men killed and wounded in this or 
any subsequent action during the seven days' fight cannot be 
determined with any accuracy, as the official reports embraced 
the entire campaign in the aggregate. 

On Sunday morning, the 29th of June, Branch's Brigade re- 
crossed the Chickahominy in pursuit and again encountered the 
enemy in a hard-fought battle at Frazier's Farm, lasting from 5 
o'clock p. M. until night-fall on the 30th of June. In this action 
the Seventh, under Colonel Haywood, made a gallant charge 
across an open field that was swept by musketry and artillery, 
and drove the enemy from its front for a considerable distance — 
every foot of the ground being hotly contested. Lieutenant 
John Milton Alexander, Company H, was killed. Wounded : 
Lieutenants E. G. Blackmer, Company F, and W. N. Dickey, 
Company I. Missing: Lieutenant John P. Young, Company B. 


The battle of Malvern Hill was fought on the afternoon- of 
Tuesday, July 1st. The Seventh, as were the other regiments 
of the brigade, was ordered to the battlefield in support of troops 
already engaged, and remained in reserve to the close of the 
action, exposed to .the enemy^s fire, with no opportunity of re- 
turning it. 

During this " week of battles," the Seventh Regiment sus- 
tained a loss of thirty-seven killed and two hundred and two 
wounded and fourteen missing — total, two hundred and fifty- 


370 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 


Branch's Brigade was sent by rail to Gordonsville, July 29th, 
and on Saturday, August 9th, the battle of Cedar Run was 
fought. About 3 o'clock in the afternoon there was a spirited 
artillery duel between Confederate and Federal batteries. About 
5 o'clock the infantry became hotly engaged. At first the enemy 
was successful and drove the Confederates back. At the oppor- 
tune moment Branch's Brigade, marching at the head of the 
" Light Division," advanced and checked the enemy, and in 
turn drove him back with loss. Just as it was in the act of 
advancing, the Seventh was, by General Jackson's personal order, 
directed to'cross to the right of the main road and pursue a de- 
tached body of the enemy then in retreat. This movement 
resulted in the capture of some thirty odd prisoners, including 
two commissioned officers. The regiment was little exposed in 
this action. Its loss was one killecl and one wounded. The 
Confederates recrossed the Rapidan on the 12th, and encamped 
around Orange Court House. On the 20th of August there 
was a general advance of the army, and Branch's Brigade con- 
fronted the enemy opposite Warrenton Springs on the 22d, and 
was exposed^to the fire of several batteries during Saturday and 
Sunday. Early on Monday, August 25th, General Jackson 
disappeared from Pope's front, crossed the Rappahannock un- 
molested, aud arrived at Bristoe Station on the night of the 26th, 
and early the following morning Branch's Brigade reached Ma- 
nassas Junction, and a few hours later it chased Taylor's New 
Jersey Brigade some miles beyond Bull Run. 

second battle of MANASSAS. 

The next time the Seventh confronted the enemy was on the 
historic field of Manassas, where, on the afternoon of August 
28th, it was exposed to the fire of a Federal battery, but suf- 
fered slight loss. On Friday morning, August 29th, the Sev- 
enth was on the right of the brigade, and in rear of a grove on 

Seventh Eegiment. 371 

the Confederate left, and not far from Crenshaw's Battery. 
Shortly after assuming this position, Captain J. McLeod Turner 
was ordered to advance his company, and soon the sound of his 
rifles told that he was driving the enemy's skirmishers. During 
the morning hours there were heavy and irregular volleys of 
musketry on the right, sometimes nearer, then further away, as 
one or the other of the combatants were forced to yield ground. 
About 3 o'clock p. m. the Federal commander shifted his point 
of attack and fell with great fury on the Confederate left. 

Guided by the sound of battle. General Branch advanced his 
brigade and engaged the enemy's troops, then flushed by tempo- 
rary success, and drove them across the railroad and into the woods 
beyond. In obedience to orders, the brigade recrossed the railroad 
and reformed its line of battle. Details were sent to collect cart- 
ridges from the boxes of those who had fallen and issue them to the 
men in ranks awaiting the renewal of the conflict. Colonel Hay- 
wood was wounded and Captain R. B. McRae took command, and 
right gallantly did he discharge the duties thus imposed on him. 
Hardly were the necessary preparations complete before the 
enemy advanced fresh troops and renewed the battle with great 
energy and with like results. The brigade successfully held 
its position against repeated attacks until the going down of the 

With evident feelings of pride, General Branch publicly com- 
plimented his brigade for gallant conduct. Said he : "Burnside 
whipped us at New Bern, but we have whipped him this even- 
ing." The Seventh fought bravely and eSiciently. Not a single 
Yankee was able to cross the railroad in its front, though efibrts 
were made to do so that were well-nigh irresistible. Its loss 
was seven killed and sixty wounded. The following day, 
though not actively engaged, it was nevertheless exposed to a 
heavy artillery fire and joined in the pursuit of the enemy late 
that afternoon. 

On the afternoon of Monday, September 1st, the battle of Ox 
Hill was fought in a blinding rain-storm. The Seventh ex- 
hibited its customary valor from the opening to the close of the 

372 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

action. Its loss was eight killed and seventeen wounded. Cap- 
tain E. B. McRae, commanding the regiment, was severely- 
wounded, and Captain J. G. Knox, Company A, succeeded him 
in command. 

The Seventh was in the First Maryland campaign, and crossed 
the Potomac at Point of Rocks on the afternoon of September 
4th, arrived at Frederick, Maryland, on the 6th, and remained 
for some days. While here the regiment was re-inforced by one 
hundred and thirty conscripts. It recrossed the Potomac at 
Williamsport on the 12th, and was part of the force that invested 
Harper's Ferry on the Virginia sid« the following day. 

On Sunday night, the 14th, the Seventh preceded the brigade 
in its advance, successfully dislodged the enemy from the moun- 
tain cliifs overhanging the Shenandoah, and secured possession 
of Bolivar Heights, overlooking Harper's Ferry. This was 
accomplished with a loss of one killed and three wounded. 

Early Monday morning, September 15th, the garrison of 
Harper's Ferry surrendered after a spirited shelling from Con- 
federate batteries bearing on it from all points. The Seventh 
Regiment, up to this time, armed with the smooth-bore Spring- 
field musket, now exchanged it for the Springfield rifle, a more 
effective weapon at longer range. This regiment left Harper's 
Ferry on the morning of September 17th and arrived at Sharps- 
burg in the afternoon just in time to help repulse Burnside's 
troops, then across Antietam Creek, and gradually pushing the 
Confederate right toward Sharpsburg. Its loss in this action 
was nine killed and forty-three wounded. The brave General 
Branch was killed near the close of the action, and Colonel 
James H. Lane assumed command of the brigade. 

The battle was not renewed the following day, and that night, 
the 18th, the army recrossed the Potomac at Shepherdstown. 
Branch's Brigade formed part of the rearguard and was the 
last command to cross the river on the 19th. The rear of its 
column was shelled as it disappeared over the hills on the Vir- 
ginia side. 

At Shepherdstown, on the 20th of September, the Seventh 

Seventh Eegiment. 373 

was one of the regiments that so gallantly charged the enemy 
across the big corn field, notwithstanding it was honey- 
combed by the concentrated fire of Federal batteries from the 
opposite side of the Potomac. In this affair the regiment had 
fifteen men wounded. 

The next offensive movement in which it took part was the 
destruction of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad from North 
Mountain Depot to Hedgeville. The regiment then encamped 
near Bunker Hill, until the,lst of November, at which time it 
removed to the vicinity of Berryville. 

On the 1st of November, ,1862, Colonel James H. Lane was 
promoted to be Brigadier General, and permanently assigned by 
request to the command of Branch's Brigade. 

Early in November the Federal army crossed the Potomac at 
Harper's Ferry and slowly advanced along the railroad to War- 
renton. Longstreet's Corps disappeared from the Valley and 
confronted the enemy in the neighborhood of Culpeper. Court 
House. On the 22d of November Jackson's Corps broke camp 
above Winchester and moved rapidly to New Market, thence 
south to the vicinity of Guinea Station on the railroad leading 
from Fredericksburg to Richmond. 

Nothing occurred to foreshadow the expected battle until the 
night of the 11th, when firing was heard in the direction of 
Fredericksburg, which increased in volume the following morn- 
ing — a sure warning of the approaching contest, in which the 
Army of Northern Virginia would again measure arms with its 
old antagonist, the Army of the Potomac, under its new com- 
mander. Genera] Burnside. 

the battle op peedericksbueg. 

The battle of Fredericksburg was fought Saturday, December 
13, 1862, Lane's Brigade was on Jackson's left, some two 
miles southeast of the town, and the Seventh Regiment was on 
Lane's left, about two hundred yards distant from the railroad 
and about the same distance in front of the right of Pender's 
North Carolina brigade. A short distance beyond the railroad 

374 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'66. 

there was a ridge that extended some distance to the right, and 
was lost in the common level of the surrounding plain. This 
ridge was occupied by a battalion of artillery, thirteen guns, 
under Major Braxton, with instructions to play on the enemy's 
infantry without replying to his artillery. Before the fight began 
the Seventh Regiment, Lieutenant-Colonel Hill commanding, 
was advanced to the railroad to insure the safety of the guns. 
A fog hung over the field and concealed the enemy's movements 
until well under way. 

About 9 o'clock A. M. a line of battle advanced from under 
cover of the river bank and was driven back by the fire of the 
artillery in front. By way of retaliation, several Federal bat- 
teries opened on Braxton's guns, and also did the Seventh serious 
injury, driving in its skirmishers, ten of them having been in- 
jured by one shell. The enemy's skirmishers then advanced 
and endangered the gunners, and on this fact being reported 
to Colonel Hill by one of their officers, he promptly advanced 
his regiment and drove them off. Meantime the artillery 
left the field, and to save his men, Colonel Hill ordered the 
regiment into the railroad cut near by, where it remained 
about two hours, during which time there was a lull in the 

In forming his line of battle, General A. P. Hill had left an 
open space of several hundred yards, extending from Lane's 
right to Archer's left. By noon the fog of the early morning 
had cleared away, and the keen-sighted Yankees were not long 
in detecting this opening, against which they sent a cloud of 
skirmishers and directed a powerful artillery fire. 

The Seventh Regiment now left the railroad cut and resumed 
its former position on the left of the brigade. In a short 
while the enemy advanced in great force to the crest of the hill 
beyond the railroad, several stands of colors being visible in 
front of the Seventh, but their troops were not sufficiently 
exposed to invite its fire. Remaining stationary for a short 
time, they retired, then advanced a second time and remained 
stationary as before, apparently hesitating to risk the result; 

Seventh Eegiment. 375 

ai\d presently the entire column moved by the left flank 
behind the ridge and massed on the fatal opening. Turning 
Lane's right and Archer's left, they entered the woods to the 
rear and momentarily endangered the Confederate center. 

The Seventh Regiment remained in line until the regiments 
on its right gave way, when it also fell back in good order to 
General Pender's line, under a heavy artillery fire. From there 
it was immediately ordered to the right of the brigade, where it 
rendered good service in helping to drive the enemy back and 
aiding to re-establish the line. The writer, from personal ob- 
servation, bears testimony to the gallant and heroic resistance 
made by the Thirty-seventh and Twenty-eighth Regiments 
North Carolina Troops to overwhelming numbers, as they 
entered the opening and turned the positions held by these 
regiments. The repulse of the enemy was complete, his loss 
frightful, and he made no further assault on this part of the 
line. In the Seventh Regiment eleven men were killed and 
eighty-one wounded. Among the latter Captain J. McLeod 
Turner was shot through the body and sustained a serious 
lung injury, and Captain John G. Knox, of Company A, was 
quite seriously wounded. Lieutenant Sol. Furr, of Company 
B, was also wounded. 

After the Federal army recrossed the river the Confederates 
went into winter-quarters along the Rappahannock. Lane's 
Brigade encamped near Moss Neck. Army supplies had to be 
hauled in wagons from Guinea Station, a distance of nine miles. 
Heavy details were sent daily to help corduroy the miry roads, 
and this, in connection with the ordinary camp duties and con- 
stantly maintaining a long picket line, kept the Seventh busy 
during the bleak winter months. 


No event transpired to interrupt the usual round of daily duty 
until Thursday, April 30, 1868, when the booming of cannon 
called the army to Fredericksburg the second time, and the Con- 
federates re-occupied the lines so successfully defended the pre- 

376 NoKTH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

vious December. A large body of Federal troops under General 
Sedgewick occupied the town, but made no effort to advance. 

Early the following morning, May 1, Lane's Brigade moved 
up the Orange plank-road and formed in line of battle near 
Chancellorsville late in the evening. The heavy skirmishing 
near night indicated an enemy in force, and we quietly awaited 
the developments of another day. 

Early next morning, Saturday, May 2d, Jackson's troops were 
in motion — the column turned off from the plank-road at the 
Catharine Iron Furnace, and marched rapidly past the front of 
the Federal army, and late in the afternoon it reached the old 
turnpike road, to the right and rear of Hooker's army. It was 
near sunset when the advance began. Rodes' Division sur- 
prised the Eleventh Corps on the Federal right, which, after a 
feeble resistance, fled in the wildest confusion. Other lines, 
doubtless affected by their panic-stricken comrades, became de- 
moralized, and no serious opposition was encountered until 
within three-fourths of a mile of Chancellorsville. At this 
point the " Light Division " was ordered to the front to take 
charge of and continue the pursuit. As the leading brigade 
(Lane's) was nearing the point at which it was to deploy in line 
of battle, it was exposed to a very heavy artillery fire in column 
on the plank-road, and to escape its destructive effect the men 
were ordered to lie down. As soon as the firing was over the 
Seventh Regiment, followed by the Thirty-seventh, filed to the 
right of the plank-road and formed parallel to but not in the 
breastworks, the left of the Thirty-seventh extending to the 
plank-road. The Twenty-eighth and Eighteenth filed to the 
left, the right of the latter regiment resting on the road. The 
Thirty-third, under Colonel C. M. Avery, was thrown forward 
as skirmishers and covered the front of the brigade. Before 
preparations were complete for resuming the advance the enemy 
succeeded in passing a column of infantry behind the skirmishers 
and in front of the Seventh Regiment. Presently an oSicer 
with a white flag came forward and inquired for the command- 
ing officer, and also demanded to know whether the troops in 

Seventh Regiment. 377 

his front were Union or Confederates. General Lane very 
properly sent him to the rear under guard, as he did not wish 
to surrender. While awaiting the return of their flag, a shot 
was fired from the enenay's line, and in response the Seventh 
poured a volley into the dark line in its front, and as a result 
some two hundred and fifty Federal soldiers immediately sur- 
rendered. Lieutenant-Colonel Hill directed Captain John P. 
Young, with his company, to conduct them to General Jackson's 
headquarter guard. The enemy's batteries now opened afresh 
and his infantry advanced, but did not come within musket- 
range of the Seventh. 

Early next morning, Sunday, May 3d, the entire line wheeled 
somewhat to the left. Then, in obedience to orders, the forward 
movement began. The Seventh was preceded by one of its com- 
panies as skirmishers under Lieutenant John Y. Templeton, and 
notwithstanding the intervening woods was swept by a wither- 
ing fire of musketry and artillery, this regiment unhesitatingly 
pushed forward and drove the enemy out of the first line of works 
in its front. Unfortunately the expected support failed to 
"show up," and after a gallant fight against fresh troops it was 
in turn driven back by the concentrated fire of the enemy's for- 
tified batteries surrounding the Chancellor house and the flank 
fire of an approaching column on the right. After refilling 
cartridge-boxes the regiment immediately went into position on 
the left of the plank-road in support of General Colquitt's 
Georgia Brigade. It lost heavily in the fight — fifty-three killed, 
one hundred and twenty-seven wounded and five missing — 
total, one hundred and eighty-five. Colonel Haywood and 
Major Davidson were wounded early in the morning. Ad- 
jutant Ives Smedes was killed in the advance and Lieuten- 
ant-Colonel Junius L. Hill lost his life while at the enemy's 

The following company officers were killed, viz. : Company 
A, Lieutenant E. Mansfield Campbell and Robert A. Bolick; 
Company B, Captain John P. Young; Company D, Captain 
William J. Kerr; Company F, Lieutenant James W. Emack. 

378 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

The following were wounded, viz. : Company A, Lieutenant 
P. C. Carlton; Company B, Lieutenant J. S. Harris; Company 
F, Lieutenant T. G. Williamson ; Company G, Lieutenant John 
Y. Templeton; Company H, Lieutenant J. M. W. Alexander 
and Lieutenant Dixon B. Penick ; Company I, Captain James 
R. McAulay, and Lieutenant Robert G. McAulay, mortally. 
The color-bearer, Sergeant E. M. Correll, also received a dis- 
abling wound. 

After the return to winter-quarters an election was held in the 
various companies of the regiment, in accordance with an act of 
Congress authorizing the President to bestow medals, " with 
proper devices, upon such officers as shall be conspicuous for 
courage and good conduct on the field of battle, and also to con- 
fer a badge on one private or non-commissioned officer of each 
company after every signal victory it shall have assisted to 
achieve," and the names of the following soldiers were selected 
by their comrades to be placed on the " Confederate roll of 
honor" for gallant and meritorious conduct in the battle of 
Chancellorsville, viz.: Second Lieutenant A. M. Walker, Com- 
pany K; Corporal William H. Millstead, Company A; Ser- 
geant William G. Sawyer, Company B; Corporal Philip 
Strickland, Company C; Sergeant Thomas Brinkle, Com- 
pany D; private Elisha H. Eure, Company E; private Ed- 
ward H. Williams, Company F ; Corporal Ira W. Smith, 
Company G; Sergeant Robert M. Caldwell, Company H; 
private Thomas L. Purdie, Company I ; Sergeant Isaac S. 
McCurdy, Company K. From some cause the above medal 
and badges were never delivered, and no further elections were 
held in the Seventh Regiment under the act authorizing them. 

After the death of General Jackson the Army of Northern 
Virginia was composed of three corps — Longstreet's, Ewell's 
and A.. P. Hill's. Lane's Brigade was in Pender's Division, A. 
P. Hill's Corps. For several weeks succeeding the battle of 
Chancellorsville no active movement was undertaken by either 

About the 1st of June, 1863, the Army of Northern Vir- 

Seventh Regiment. 379 

ginia largely disappeared from the Rappahannock, Hill's Coi'ps 
alone renaaining at Fredericksburg to watch Hooker's move- 
ments and protect Richmond. Alarmed by the report of so 
many Confederates in the Shenandoah Valley, the Federal com- 
mander withdrew from Fredericksburg about the middle of 
June. General Hill also left Fredericksburg on the 15th, and 
by rapid marches crossed the Potomac at Shepherdstown on the 
25th and arrived at Fayetteville, Pennsylvania, on the afternoon 
of the 27th. Longstreet was at Chambersburg and Ewell some 
miles in advance. 


The march of the Confederate columns was directed to Gettys- 
burg on Wednesday morning, July 1st, and the leading division 
of Hill's Corps (Heth's) engaged the Federal advance before noon. 
Lane's Brigade marched from South Mountain without oppo- 
sition until across a small stream northwest of Gettysburg. Here 
it formed line of battle in supporting distance of Heth's Divis- 
ion on the left of the Chambersburg road. In this order the 
two lines advanced and drove the enemy back several hundred 
yards, then halted, and Lane's Brigade was withdrawn from the 
center and placed on the right of Pender's Division. Here the 
Seventh Regiment, Major Turner commanding, was sent to 
watch the movement of the enemy's cavalry, with instructions 
to move by the left flank, as skirmishers, so as to cover the 
right of the brigade in its advance. About 4 o'clock in the 
afternoon there was a general advance, and after desperate fight- 
ing the enemy was driven through and beyond the town. On 
account of the threatening attitude of the cavalry the Seventh 
was detained, but subsequently rejoined the brigade on Seminary 
Ridge, near McMillan's house. This regiment was inactive the 
following day, July 2d. It was subjected to a very heavy artil- 
lery fire in the afternoon, and that night two of its companies 
were sent to re-inforce the brigade skirmishers under Major 
Brown, then occupying the Emmittsburg road. 

380 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Friday morning, July 3d, found the mighty combatants "in 
place " where the battle of the previous day ended. The skir- 
mishers began the bloody day's work at an early hour (those of 
the enemy being unusually spiteful), and the wounded, at times, 
came out in squads. Thomas' and McGowan's Brigades were 
advanced the night before to support Eodes' Division in the con- 
templated night attack. General Pender was badly wounded the 
evening before and General Lane was in command of his division. 
At noon Lane's and Scales' Brigades were ordered to the 
right and formed in the rear of Heth's Division (commanded 
by General Pettigrew), then in line of battle and awaiting orders 
to advance on Cemetery Ridge. About this time Major General 
Trimble was put in command of Pender's Division (Lane and 
Scales), General Lane resumed command of the brigade, and Col- 
onel Avery, commanding the brigade, returned to his regiment. 
Seminary Ridge was crowned with a formidable array of artil- 
lery, which at a given signal was to open a furious fire on Cem- 
etery Ridge for the purpose of silencing the enemy's artillery and 
demoralizing the infantry, and as soon as this result was appa- 
rent the assaulting columns were to advance and carry the 
Federal position by storm. The artillery duel I'aged with great 
fury for near two hours, then the enemy's fire decreased in vol- 
ume and number of guns, and the order to advance was imme- 
diately given. 

The Seventh Regiment was on the right of the brigade and 
connected with Scales' left, and the marked steadiness of its 
advance over that storm-swept field was but a repetition of its 
gallantry on other fields. It went as far as any other command, 
and was among the last to leave the field. Its loss was seven- 
teen killed, eighty-four wounded and forty-one missing. (Its 
flag was also left on the field after every member of the color- 
guard had either been killed or wounded). The following offi- 
cers were wounded : Major J. McLeod Turner, who so gallantly 
commanded the regiment, was badly wounded and left near the 
enemy's works; Captain T. J. Cahill, Company D; Captain J. 
W. Vick, CoDipany E; Lieutenant D. F. Kinney, Company F, 
and. Captain A. A. Hill, Company G. 

Seventh Regiment. 381 

On the retreat at Hagerstown, Saturday, July 11th, the regi- 
ment formed a line of battle and skirmished with the enemy, 
and on Monday night, the 13th, fell back with the army, march- 
ing all night in pitchy-darkness and torrents of rain. 

Next morning, July 14th, immediately after the unfortunate 
wounding of General Pettigrew near Falling Waters, General 
Heth, then commanding his own and Pender's Division, ordered 
General Lane with his brigade to act as rear-guard and pro- 
tect the crossing of his troops. This arduous and dangerous 
duty it successfully accomplished, repulsing and holding in 
check an active and aggressive foe until every other command 
was safely across the Potomac, when it also retired to the Vir- 
ginia shore, and thus ended the trans-Potomac campaign. 


For some days the army remained in the neighborhood of 
Berryville, then moved south by way of Front Royal, and 
made a short stay at Culpeper Court House, then continuing 
the march, it re-occupied the line of the Rapidan in the early 
days of August. Lane's Brigade was stationed near Orange 
Court House and the Seventh did picket duty at Morton's Ford. 
No active movements were undertaken by either army for 
some weeks, and strong efforts were made to fill up the depleted 
ranks by encouraging absentees to return. The duties were also 
lightened (as much as the good of the service would admit) on 
the brave men who had borne the heat and burden of an ex- 
haustive and unsuccessful campaign. Major-General Pender 
died of the wound he received at Gettysburg, and Brigadier- 
General C. M. Wilcox was promoted to the rank of Major- 
General and succeeded to the command of the "Light Division." 

The next active movement in which the Seventh toolt a part 
was on Tuesday, September 22d, when it was ordered to Jack's 
Shop to oppose a cavalry demonstration toward Gordonsville, 
but was not engaged, as General Stuart had in the meantime 
succeeded in defeating the enemy. The regiment recrossed the 
Rapidan the next day and encamped on Mr. Newman's farm, 

382 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

from which point it did picket duty at Liberty Mills and main- 
tained a picket post on the Stanardsville road. 

The quiet of camp-life was next broken by the general ad- 
vance of the army on the 9th of October. The Federal com- 
mander, General Meade, unwilling to risk an engagement on the 
Eappahannock, retired along the Orange & Alexandria Rail- 
road in the direction of Washington. On the 14th of October, 
the leading division of Hill's Corps (Heth's) was repulsed with 
loss by the rear of the Federal army, under General Warren, at 
Bristoe Station. The Seventh and other regiments of the brigade 
formed line of battle under fire, but on account of approaching 
darkness did not advance. The Federal commander continued 
his retrograde movement during the night, and the following 
day the Confederates returned, completing the destruction of 
the railroad to the Eappahannock. The Seventh cheerfully 
performed the task assigned it, and on the 25th of October 
recrossed the river and camped near Brandy Station. 

On the 7th of November the greater part of two of General 
Early's brigades (Hoke's and Hays'), doing picket duty beyond 
the Rappahannock, near Kelly's Ford, were captured by the 
enemy. The next morning the array fell back, and when near 
Culpeper Court House the Seventh aided in repulsing the 
enemy's cavalry charge, sustaining a loss of one killed, private 
Mack Winecoff, Company H, and four others wounded. Lieu- 
tenant P. C. Carlton, Company A, was also wounded. That 
night the march was resumed and the following day the regi- 
ment re-occupied its quarters at Liberty Mills. 

On the 15th of November it received orders to strike tents 
and proceed to Orange Court House to repel a brigade of Fed- 
eral cavalry that had crossed the Rapidan at Morton's Ford, but 
the order was subsequently countermanded. 

On the 26th of November the Seventh marched to Mine Run 
to aid in opposing General Meade's advance on Gordonsville. 
Next day, in a rain-storm, it worked hard all day building breast- 
works. The rain was followed by high winds, clear and in- 

Seventh Eegiment. 383 

tensely cold weather, and the sufferings of the thinly-clad troops 
were simply indescribable. The sentinels on the skirmish line 
were relieved every thirty minutes, but the time seemed much 
longer — many of them insisting that they had been on duty an 

On the 1st of March of 1864, the Seventh, in obedience to 
orders, marched through mud and rain to Madison Court House 
to oppose a cavalry raid, only to iind. the enemy gone. That 
night it snowed, and the men, being without tents or shelter of 
any kind, suffered much discomfort. On the 20th of April 
all surplus baggage was sent to Richmond, and no pains were' 
spared in getting the troops in the best fighting trim possible. 
The sun and winds were fast hardening the roads and hourly 
hastening the impending struggle which was to decide the fate 
of the Confederacy. 

The Seventh Regiment, with twenty-seven commissioned 
officers and four hundred and twenty-five enlisted men, left 
Liberty Mills on the 4th of May, 1864, and reached the Wil- 
derness battlefield the following afternoon, and from five o'clock 
to nine at night it was closely engaged and successfully drove 
the enemy through swamps and tangled woods for several hun- 
dred yards. At one time the regiment narrowly escaped being 
captured, its left having advanced in the darkness within the 
enemy's line. Its loss was in killed : Lieutenants S. Layne Hay- 
men, Company E; W. H. Haywood, Company K, and three 
enlisted men. Wounded: Lieutenants J. W. Ballentine, Com- 
pany E; E. B. Roberts, Company I, and sixty enlisted men. 
Missing: Colonel Wm. Lee Davidson, Captains J. G. Knox, 
Company A, and Walter G. McRae, Company C, and thirty- 
four enlisted men. 


At Spottsylvania Court House, on the 12th of May, when 
Ewell's line was broken at early dawn and the greater part of 
Johnson's Division captured, this regiment rendered invaluable 
service in checking the tide of Federal victory by constantly 

384 North Carolina Troops, 18 61-65. 

pouring into the enemy's ranks a fire so deadly that no troops, 
however brave, could withstand. Later in the day it was one of 
the regiments selected to lead the advance of Lane's Brigade in 
that brilliant flank movement which surprised Burnside's ad- 
vancing column and captured more than four hundred prisoners 
and three stands of colors. Its loss was eleven enlisted men 
killed, twenty-five wounded and four missing. Adjutant John 
W. Pearson, Lieutenants Thomas P. Malloy, Company D, and J. 
L. Stafford, Company H, were wounded ; total forty-three. In 
the assault on the 21st of May to the right of the Fredericks- 
" burg road, which resulted in the capture of the enemy's breast- 
works, the regiment sustained a loss of one killed and seven 
wounded. At Jericho Mills, on the 23d of May, it was detached 
to guard a ford on the river and was not engaged. Two days 
later, on the 25th, the regiment was exposed to an annoying 
artillery fire at Anderson's Turnout on the Virginia Central 
Railroad. It was again exposed to the enemy's fire of both 
infantry and artillery near Pole Green Church on the 31st of 
May, but not actively engaged. 

At Cold Harbor, June 2d, it was part of the support to Whar- 
ton's Brigade of Breckinridge's Division in that successful 
charge which secured Turkey Ridge to the Confederates. 

At Riddle's Shop, on the 13th of June, the regiment was in 
line of battle for several hours, but not engaged. 


On the 18th of June the regiment reached the outer defenses 
of Petersburg and took part in the action at Wells' Farm, three 
miles southeast of Petersburg, on the afternoon of the 22d, when 
the enemy was completely foiled in his attempt to reach the 
Petersburg & Weldon Railroad. The next morning, while re- 
lieving Mahone's Brigade from the trenches in front of Peters- 
burg, it exhibited coolness and nerve under a withering fire of 
musketry and artillery at close range. 

Early in July the regiment returned to the north side of the 
James, and remained in the vicinity of Dutch Gap until the 28th 

Seventh Regiment. 385 

of July, when it was actively engaged at Gravel Hill. Lieu- 
tenant R. M. Quince, of Company C, Acting Adjutant, was 
killed, and the regiment sustained a loss of twenty-five killed, 
wounded and missing. 

At Fuzzell's Mill, August 16th, the Seventh was on the left 
of the line in that gallant charge in which Lane's Brigade, led 
by Colonel Barber, recaptured the Confederate intrenchments 
(lost by other troops) on the Darbytown road in the presence of 
General R. E. Lee. The enemy's force consisted in part of 
negro troops. 

Returning to Petersburg, the Seventh was engaged at Reams' 
Station on the 25th of August, and sustained its reputation for 
good fighting qualities in that irresistible charge made by Cook's, 
McRae's and Lane's Brigades, which dislodged Hancock's Corps 
and regained to the Confederates the possession of the Petersburg 
and Weldon Railroad. Its loss was four killed and twenty- 
eight wounded. Captain J. R. McAulay, of Company I, fell 
in the advance. His death was a real loss to the service. 

The Seventh was engaged from "start to finish " in that spir- 
ited fight at Jones' Farm, on the right of the Petersburg lines, 
on the afternoon of September 30, 1864, and gallantly drove 
the enemy in its front from the field. While the loss of enlisted 
men was comparatively small, one killed and twelve wounded, 
it was a sore battle to its thirteen company officers, as the follow- 
ing will show : Killed : Lieutenant John R. Pearson, Company 
F. Wounded : Lieutenants P. C. Carlton, Company A ; A. F. 
Bizzelle, Company B; John W. Ballentine, Company E; John 
Y. Templeton, Company G ; Captain J. G. Harris and Lieu- 
tenant Dixon B. Penick, Company H. 

This regiment was in the advance the next morning and helped 
drive the enemy from his unfinished line near Pegram's house, 
and held it for the remainder of the day. After dark the regi- 
ment retired to the intrenchments near the Jones house, where, 
about the middle of November, it erected winter-quarters. 

On the 8th of December the Seventh, with the other com- 
mands of Hill's Corps, marched through rain and snow to , 

386 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

oppose the enemy's forces then operating against the Petersburg 
& Weldon Railroad. On reaching Jarratt's Station, and find- 
ing the enemy gone, the command was ordered back to winter- 
quarters. During this march the weather was extremely cold 
and the sufferings of the poorly clad men were pitiable indeed. 

While in winter-quarters at Petersburg, Colonel Haywood 
resigned, and Lieutenant-Colonel William Lee Davidson became 
Colonel; Major J. McLeod Turner, Lieutenant-Colonel, and Cap- 
tain James G. Harris, of Company H, became Major of the 
Seventh Regiment. 

On the night of the 26th of February, 1865, the Seventh 
Major Harris commanding, left the defenses of Petersburg, and 
went by rail to High Point, N. C, for the purpose of arresting 
and returning absentees from the army, its field of operations 
being Randolph, Moore and Chatham counties. 

Ou the advance of Stoneman's raiders into Western North 
Carolina the regiment returned to High Point, and on the 1st 
of April it was sent by rail to the Yadkin bridge, six miles 
northeast of Salisbury, as an attempt to destry the bridge was 
apprehended. On the 5th it was taken to Danville, Virginia, 
and on the 11th it was ordered to return to Greensboro. 

On the 16th of April it was assigned to General D. H. Hill's 
Division, Lee's Corps, Army of Tennessee. It was detailed on 
the 19th to rebuild the railroad bridge across Deep River at 
Jamestown, recently burned by Stoneman, and by the evening 
of the 24th the bridge was complete for the passage of trains. 

General Joseph E. Johnston officially announced the surrender 
of the Army of Tennessee on the 27th of April, and ou Mon- 
day, May 1, 1865, the Seventh Regiment, numbering thirteen 
commissioned officers and one hundred and thirty-nine enlisted 
men, was paroled near Greensboro, North Carolina, and imme- 
diately disbanded, its war-worn veterans hastening to their 
homes to engage in the battle of life. 

J. S. Harris. 


1 May, 1900. 


1. H. M. Shaw, Colonel. 4. Jonas Cook, Captain, Co. H. 

2. John E. Mnrchison, Colonel. 5. Leonard A. Henderson, Captain, Co. P. 

3. Enfus A. Barrier, Lient.-Colonel. 0. Harvey C. McAllister, 1st Lieut., Co, H. 

7. W. 11. Bagley, Captain, Co. A. 


By H. T. J. LUDWIG, Drummer, Company H. 

The Eighth Eegiment North Carolina State Troops was organ- 
ized at Camp Macon, near Warrenton, N. C, in the months of 
August and September, 1861, with the following field ofiQcers 
and companies. The counties named show from what section of 
the State the officers and men volunteered: 


Colonel, H. M. Shaw, Currituck county ; Lieutenant-Colonel, 
William J. Price, New Hanover county; Major, George Wil- 
liamson, Caswell county; Adjutant, J. B. Cherry, Bertie county ; 
Sergeant-major, L. G. Thornton, New Hanover county; Assis- 
tant Quartermaster, C. W. Grandy, Virginia; Assistant Comis- 
sary-sergeant, H. G. Trader, Hertford county; Surgeon, H. P. 
Ritter, Pasquotank county. 


Company A — Pasquotank, Perquimans and Camden Coun- 
ties — Captain, James W. Hinton. 

Company B — Currituck County — Captain, James M. Whitson. 

Company C — Edgecombe, Franklin and New Hanover Coun- 
ties — Captain, Henry McRae. 

Company D — Granville, Franklin and Warren Counties — 
Captain, A. J. Rogers. 

Company E — Cumberland, Chatham and Harnett Counties — 
Captain, James W. Williams. 

Company F — New Hanover, Warren, Rowan and Franklin 
Counties — Captain, Charles J. Jones. 

388 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Company G — Pitt and Greene Counties — Captain, Edward 
C. Yellowly. 

Company H — Cabarrus County — Captain, Rufus A. Barrier. 
Company I — Alamanoe County — Captain, Gaston D. Cobb. 
Company K — Bowan County — Captain, P. A. Kennerly. 

Otiier counties were represented by one or a few men in the 
companies generally. 

The regiment was mustered into the Confederate service on 
the 13th of September by Colonel Robert Ransom, the term of 
service being for the war. During the stay at Camp Macon our 
work consisted of drilling, standing guard and such other duties 
as necessarily pertain to camp-life. 

We were not detained long in the camp of instruction near 
Warrenton. On the 18th of September tents were struck, the 
regiment having been ordered to Roanoke Island. The trip on 
the canal and sound on the way from Camp Macon to the island 
was delightful, it being about the time of full moon, and the 
weather being fine. We arrived at Roanoke Island on the 21st of 
September. The first duty after landing was to arrange camp, 
dig wells, etc. This work took several days. Then drilling 
and work on the fortifications became the regular duties of the 

On the 3d of October the regiment, consisting of about six 
hundred and fifty men, in company with the Third Georgia 
Regiment and a few other troops, embarked on barges in tow by 
steamers, on the sound, for the purpose of attacking a force of 
the enemy then encamped on the narrow strip of land stretching 
along- the sea-shore, known as Chicamacomico. The attack was 
made on the 4th of October, and resulted in the capture of the 
camp and fifty-five prisoners. The Third Georgia made the 
attack on the camp, whilst the Eighth North Carolina was to 
intercept the retreat of the enemy. Accordingly, when the enemy 
began their retreat the Eighth Regiment was ordered to proceed 
towards Hatteras, efi^ect a landing and await the approach of the 
retreating enemy. We proceeded to a point in Pamlico Sound 

Eighth Regiment. 389 

opposite to where the landing was to be made. The position 
taken by the barges which conveyed the regiment was about 
three miles from land. Orders were given to leave the barges 
and wade to the shore. After wading about one mile, a deep 
channel, too deep to cross, was met. The order to return to the 
barges was given. In the meantime the tide began to rise, and 
by the time the last of the men arrived at the barges the water 
was up to their armpits and chins. There was some suffering 
for water on this expedition, the supply carried by the men 
having been exhausted and no other drinkable being at hand to 
refill the canteens. On Sunday, October 6th, we returned to 
camp on Roanoke Island, having spent Saturday on the sound, 
some of the men having been detailed to assist in moving the 
captured camp effects of the enemy. After returning to the 
island the usual drilling and other duties pertaining to camp 
occupied the time of the men. Also, regular details were made 
to work on the fortifications then in progress on the island. 

On the 29th of October one company (H) of the regiment 
was ordered on duty in Battery Huger, near the northern 
extremity of the western side of the island. The remaining 
nine companies continued in the camp established near Fort 
Bartow, and' did duty as stated above. The first Christmas 
during the war was passed on the island, nothing unusual occur- 
ring except occasional alarms, some true, others false, till the 
early part of February, 1862. It was known in the latter part 
of December that the enemy was contemplating an attack on 
some important point somewhere on the coast. A large fleet at 
that time was collecting at Fortress Monroe. Every effort was 
made to put the island in the proper state of defense. The 
Eighth, with the other regiments and troops on the island, was 
kept constantly at work to be prepared to meet, what then seemed 
and afterwards proved true, the coming attack. 

The enemy's fleet entered Pamlico Sound at Hatteras Inlet on 
January 13tb, and appeared before the island on February the 
6th. The morning was foggy and it was near 10 o'clock before 
the fleet could be seen. No attack was made on that day. On 

390 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

the 7th the fleet drew nearer and bombarded Fort Bartow, and 
during that afternoon and night succeeded in landing about fif- 
teen thousand men. On Saturday, the 8th, at about 7 A. m.j 
the battle began, and continued something over five hours. The 
enemy had about ten thousand men in the engagement, the Con- 
federates about fourteen hundred, of which latter the Eighth 
North Carolina Regiment furnished five hundred and sixty-eight. 
The enemy crossed what had been supposed to be an impassable 
marsh, and flanked our little army. Even after having been 
flanked the Eighth Regiment stood to its post without wavering 
till orders came to retire to the north end of the island. The 
enemy having flanked our army, and considering the great 
disparity in numbers, the fall of the island was a foregone con- 
clusion. The battle, however, was continued as long as there 
was any hope of success. In the language of the commander, 
the surrender did not take place until it appeared "that any 
further slaughter would have been useless and inhuman." 

In this engagement the Eighth Regiment lost five killed and 
seven wounded, Lieutenant Monroe, of Company E, being 
among the killed. , During the time that the regiment was on 
Roanoke Island fourteen men died of sickness. 

After the surrender of the island on the 8th of February, we 
were held in camp as prisoners of war about two weeks, when 
we were conveyed by steamers to Elizabeth City, paroled and 
sent home by way of the Dismal Swamp Canal and Portsmouth. 
Whilst prisoners in the hands of the enemy we were well treated. 
Of course we were closely guarded, but no insults were oifered. 

During the first and second weeks of September, 1862, the 
men having been exchanged, the regiment re-assembled. This 
time, however, the reorganization was effected at Camp Mangum, 
on the North Carolina Railroad, a few miles west of Raleigh. 
The Eighth Regiment now became a part of General T. L. 
Clingman's Brigade. 

While at Camp Mangum the regiment attended the funeral of 
General Branch, who had been killed at the battle of Sharpsburg, 
participating in burying him with military honors. 

Eighth Eegiment. 391 

After occupying Camp Mangum a few weeks, the regiment 
was ordered to Camp Campbell, near Kioston, early in October. 
While at Camp Campbell, in addition to the usual camp duties, 
the regiment did picket duty on Core Creek between New Bern 
and Kinston. After a few weeks' camp at Camp Campbell, we 
were ordered to Kinston, where camp was established a short 
time, when orders came to move to Wilmington, N. C. While 
camping at Kinston one hasty march to Greenville, about forty 
miles, and a demonstration against New Bern were about the 
only active duties out of regular camp in which the regiment 
was ordered to take part. 

We arrived at Wilmington in the latter part of November, 
and pitched tents in Camp Whiting. Nothing of importance 
occurred while we were at Camp Whiting till about the middle 
of December, when orders came to proceed to Goldsboro to meet 
an expedition of the enemy which was advancing from New 
Bern, along the south side of Neuse River. 

On the 17th of December the regiment, with the other troops 
that had been ordered to that point, formed a line of battle on 
the south side of Neuse River, along the railroad leading to 
Wilmington, and awaited the approach of the enemy. It was 
in the afternoon when the enemy made his appearance. After 
several hours lighting, both artillery and infantry being engaged, 
the enemy retired, but suceeded in burning the bridge over the 
Neuse. In this engagement the Eighth Regiment lost three 
killed and six wounded. The regiment then returned, marching 
from Goldsboro to Camp Whiting, and went into winter-quarters. 

The beginning of the year 1863 found the regiment in winter- 
quarters at Camp Whiting, where we continued till the early 
part of February, when orders came to proceed to Charleston, 
S. C, where camp was pitched on James Island. After camp- 
ing a few weeks at this place, we were ordered to Savannah, Ga., 
where camp was established on the outskirts of the city. We 
remained here about ten days, then returned to Charleston. Our 
tents were pitched in our former camp on James Island, where 
we remained, with nothing especially important happening, till 

392 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

about the 1st of May, when orders came to return to Wil- 

On arriving at Wilmington we established camp, known ,as 
Camp Ashe, in a large oak grove near Old Topsaiil Sound, about 
twelve miles from the city. During the time the regiment 
camped on James Island quite a number of its strongest men, 
physically appearing, died from sickness. Swamps and malaria 
were the most destructive enemies the regiment met on these 

Having established camp near Old Topsail Sound, the men 
indulged themselves in fishing when not on duty. We remem- 
ber this camp, which above all others had more the resemblance 
of being devoted to holiday pleasures than to the more onerous 
and dangerous duties of soldiers engaged in war. However, 
in war pleasures do not last long. War is not a fishing 
frolic. After remaining at Camp Ashe about two months, 
we were ordered on the 10th of July to strike tents and march 
to Wilmington, where we boarded the train for Charleston, 
arriving at that point on the 13th. The enemy had already 
gained a footing on Morris Island, and was preparing to attack 
Battery Wagner. We were now destined to see hard service. 
With the enemy's land forces advancing slowly on Morris Island, 
and the iron-clad fleet lying outside the bay, it was evident that 
the transition from the pleasures at Camp Ashe to the trials, 
hardships and dangers of soldier-life in a regular, long-continued, 
stubbornly-conducted siege was to be experienced. 

The Eighth Regiment was ordered at once to James Island, 
and began work on the fortifications west of Morris Island, in 
sight of Battery Wagner, the objective point of attack of the 
enemy at the time of our arrival at Charleston. On the 18th 
of July, when the enemy assaulted Battery Wagner, we were in 
full view of the deadly conflict. The attack being made after 
dark, the flashes of the guns could be distinctly seen. The next 
day, the 19th, we were ordered to Sullivan's Island, where we 
remained till the 22d, when the regiment received orders to go 
to Morris Island. 

Eighth Eegiment. 393 

The nature of the service on Morris Island was such as to 
render it necessary for the regiments composing the army on that 
side of Charleston to perform duty alternately. While on the 
island the men were exposed at all times to the enemy's fire, 
both from land and sea. An attack had to be prepared for at 
any instant, either day or night. The men had to be ready for 
action at any moment. It was no place for rest. The battery, 
frequently shelled by the enemy's iron-clads, had to be repaired. 
The enemy's ever-active sharp-shooters had to be watched. To 
expose one's self to view meant being shot at with the attending 
consequences. The men had to keep under cover of the battery 
or in pits near by, dug in the sand-hills along the beach. Under 
such circumstances it was necessary to relieve the men once about 
every seven or eight days. 

It was on the 24th that the battery received one of the most 
terrific bombardments, continuing for several hours, it experi- 
enced during the siege. The Eighth Regiment was i^ the battery 
at the time, some of the men being placed in the bomb-proof, 
some in the sally-port, and some guarding the parapet. On one 
or two occasions during the heavy shelling the smoke of explod- 
ing shells came down through the cover of the sally-port, and at 
the cessation of the bombardment light could be seen through 
the cover of the bomb-proof. The shells were of the largest 
calibre, some of them measuring fifteen inches in diameter. So 
terrific was the concussion when one exploded near a soldier, the 
blood would be found in some cases to come out of the ears and 

The siege of Battery Wagner lasted fifty-eight days, Morris 
Island having been evacuated on the 6th of September. During 
that time the Eighth Regiment did duty on the island about 
twenty-one days, viz. : from July 22d to August the 1st, from 
August the 8th to the 15th, and from August 22d to the 29th, 
the dates being given as approximately correct. 

The enemy approached Battery Wagner by constructing 
parallels, each parallel bringing him nearer to the battery. Five 
parallels were constructed, which brought the last to within about 

394 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

one hundred yards of the battery. The nearer the approach of 
the enemy, the more severely trying the service became. The 
service was hard the first relief the regiment served on the island, 
but became harder the second and third reliefs. The men had 
to work night and day. A corps of sharp-shooters, consisting 
of about twenty picked men, who volunteered for the service, 
was organized in the Eighth Regiment. They were put in com- 
mand of Lieutenant Dugger, of Company F. How well these 
men did their duty is best expressed by Colonel Harrison in his 
report on August 12th, he being in command of the battery that 
week. He says : " My sharp-shooters, under Lieutenant Dugger, 
Eighth North Carolina Regiment, do good work, though the 
Yankees are very shy and seldom show their heads." The 
sharp-shooters were armed with Whitworth (globe-sighted) 
rifles, and in addition to their courage were most excellent 

Sometimes^ when the men were not on special duty in the bat- 
tery they would seek relief among the sand-hills between Bat- 
teries Wagner and Gregg, the two being about three hundred 
yards apart. The enemy was not long in discovering this, and 
on more than one occasion gave the sand-hills a severe shelling. 
Occasionally a bomb would strike near a pit dug among the hills 
and bury the occupants. There were, however, no fatalities in 
the Eighth Regiment from that cause. 

The living on Morris Island compared favorably with the 
character of the service. There was no place for cooking. All 
the rations had to be prepared elsewhere and carried there. The 
water, too, was bad. It was such as may be found near the 
ocean beach anywhere along the coast. 

The number of killed and wounded in the regiment while 
serving on Morris Island was not great. The nature of the 
service required nerve and pluck, but not carelessness and reck- 
lessness. It was a veritable target practice between sharp-shooters 
every day, and any careless or reckless exposure to the enemy's 
fire meant work for the ambulance corps. The men were veterans, 
and therefore understood the value of strictly obeying orders. 

Eighth Eegiment. 395 

When the regiment was assigned to a duty the men Ifnew how 
to perform it. Among the officers, Captain Rogers, Company D, 
was wounded. The gallantry of the men who composed the 
regiment was never displayed more conspicuously than when 
defending Battery Wagner. The enemy had determined to take 
Charleston, "the cradle of the rebellion." The men who 
defended the city in 1863, were just as determined that it should 
not be taken. Morris Island had to be abandoned, but every 
foot gained by the enemy had to be fought for. It was a slow 
movement, and possessed none of the quickness accompanying the 
carrying of forts by lassault. The duties performed on Morris 
Island constitute one chapter in the history of the regiment of 
which every member may be justly proud. 

Morris Island having been abandoned, the Eighth Regiment 
was assigned to duty on Sullivan's Island. There was no enemy 
on the island, and as a consequence the duties were comparatively 
light. Details of men for the purpose of strengthening the 
fortifications formed the chief occupation of the regiment. One 
evening when the regiment was on dress-parade in rear of Fort 
Moultrie the enemy's iron-clads came up and gave the fort a 
heavy bombardment. The parade was cut somewhat short, but 
no casualties occurred. On the following day the regiment moved 
to the sand-hills towards the eastern extremity of the island. 
Quarters were erected among the hills with such plank and 
material as the men could carry from the town, about one mile 
distant. The regiment remained at this place till the 30th of 
November, when camp was broken, and we marched to Mount 
Pleasant, proceeding thence by boat to Charleston, where the 
train bound for Wilmington, N. C, was boarded. On arriving 
at Wilmington our journey was continued to Kinston, where we 
remained about one week, when orders came to move to Peters- 
burg, Va., arriving at that place on the 14th of December. It 
being evening when we arrived, the regiment was ordered to 
bivouack in the streets. Accordingly small fires were built in 
the street near the edge of the sidewalk, whilst the rock pave- 
ment served as our sleeping-place. 

396 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

On the following day the regiment marched out of town and 
established camp about two miles from the city, just beyond what 
afterwards became celebrated as Hare's Hill. The duties here, 
consisting of ordinary camp duties and drilling, were light in 
comparison with the service performed at Charleston. One cir- 
cumstance is worthy of note, inasmuch as it shows the considera- 
tion Colonel Shaw had for his men. It was the usual custom 
when the troops were not on the march to have guards around 
the camp. This camp was an exception. Colonel Shaw decided 
to trust to the honor of his men and not to have guards. The 
men seemed to appreciate the motive of the Colonel and very 
rarely abused the confidence placed in them, notwithstanding the 
nearness of the city offered many temptations for them to do so. 
One hurried march down the James River, and return, in the 
latter part of December, some twenty-five or thirty miles, was 
made, and then the regiment settled in quarters for the winter. 

The greater part of the year 1863 had been spent in the ever 
memorable defense of Charleston. The year 1864 was destined 
to bring to the regiment other, but equally severe, duties, hard- 
ships and dangers. From January the 1st to the 29th the regi- 
ment remained in camp at Petersburg. On the 28th orders were 
given to prepare three days' rations. On the 29th we marched 
to the city and took the train which had been prepared to carry 
us South. We proceeded to Goldsboro, thence to Kinston, where 
we arrived on the morning of the 30th. It was now evident 
that the regiment was to form a part of the force which General 
Pickett was to command for the purpose of making a demonstra- 
tion against New Bern. 

Arriving at Kinston on the 30th, the regiment marched some 
five miles in the direction of New Bern and bivouacked for the 
night. On the morning of the 31st the march was continued, 
approaching the enemy's pickets in the evening. Early on the 
morning of the 1st of February, sometime before daybreak, we 
were ordered to march. We were now near Bachelor's Creek, 
over which was a bridge where the enemy had a block-house 
strongly guarded by his pickets. Our advance guard soon had 

Eighth Regiment. 397 

work on its hands. The enemy made a stubborn resistance at 
the creek. Whilst our advance guard was attempting to effect 
a crossing and get possession of the bridge, the main body of the 
regiment, under the command of Colonel Shaw, was resting by 
the road-side, about two hundred yards from the block-house 
which guarded the bridge. As the firing was brisk at the creek, 
quite naturally the bullets came frequently over the regiment in 
the rear. Colonel Shaw was sitting on his horse in the middle 
of the road. General Clingman being close to him. While thus 
awaiting the capture of the block-house and bridge, and 
apparently not realizing that danger was about him. Colonel 
Shaw was struck in the head by a bullet and instantly killed. 

The death of Colonel Shaw was a great loss to the regiment. 
His coolness under fire, and his calmness at all times in the 
presence of danger had an inspiring effect on the regiment, and 
doubtless much of the deliberation with which the men performed 
their duties on the field or in camp was due to the example set 
by their Colonel. 

Lieutenant-Colonel J. M. Whitson succeeded as Colonel of 
the regiment. By daylight our advanced guard had forced a 
passage across the creek and secured possession of the bridge, 
over which we marched in hurried pursuit of the retreating 
enemy. The pursuit was kept up till we came in range of the 
enemy's batteries around the town. The line of battle was 
formed, but it was soon discovered that the enemy's batteries 
could fire on us from front and flank. One shell struck in the 
line of the Eighth Regiment, mortally wounding David Bar- 
ringer, of Company K. 

It soon became evident that an attack on the enemy's works 
could not be undertaken with the least prospect of success. We 
were ordered to fall back out of range of the enemy's guns, and 
then began our Return to Kinston. The Eighth Regiment 
arrived at Kinston on the 3d, remained there a few days, and 
then returned to Petersburg. 

Speaking of the conduct of his men on the expedition to New 
Bern, General Clingman in his report says : " It gives me pleasure 

398 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

to be able to slate that, though exposed on flank and front to 
artillery fire, threatened constantly with attack by the enemy's 
cavalry and infantry, the troops under my command performed 
the movements ordered with as much coolness and precision as 
I ever saw them on drill." He speaks also in high terms of 
Colonel Shaw, and gives much praise to the men, stating that 
there was not a single instance of desertion or straggling from 
his command during the expedition. 

The next duty the Eighth Regiment was called on to perform 
was to go on an expedition against Suffolk, Va. The expedition 
was commanded by General M. W. Ransom. The attack on 
the enemy was made on the morning of March the 29th. The 
force of the enemy, which consisted of cavalry and light artillery, 
soon broke, and a running fight ensued, the enemy retreating 
through the town to Bernard's Mill, on Black Water. The 
Eighth Regiment suffered no loss in this skirmish. The enemy 
having been driven across the Black Water, no further pursuit 
was attempted. The regiment then returned to Petersburg. 

While we were in this camp a heavy snow fell in March. The 
Fifty-first North Carolina Regiment, then in camp near us, a 
branch intervening between the two camps, concluded to surprise 
and attack the Eighth Regiment with snow-balls. As the men 
of the Fifty-first were forming their line, preparatory to advanc- 
ing on us, they were observed. The Eighth took in the situation, 
and as the Fifty-first came yelling towards our camp, met the 
advancing line of battle at the branch. The snow-balling was 
heavy, and for awhile the Eighth held its ground, but owing to 
the superior strength of the Fifty-first, finally had to fall back 
to its camp. A part of the Fifty-first crossed the branch and 
followed near our camp, where they met with a repulse. The 
Eighth held its camp and the Fifty-first returned to its quarters. 
It was an excitable and enjoyable affair. * 

After returning from Suffolk, and remaining in camp a few 
weeks, the regiment was temporarily attached to General M. W. 
Ransom's Brigade and ordered to go on the expedition com- 
manded by General Hoke against Plymouth, N. C. We left 

Eighth Regiment. 399 

Petersburg, went to WeldoD, thence by Rocky Mount to Tar- 
boro by railroad. From Tarboro we marched to Plymouth, 
arriving before that town on the evening "of the 17th of April, 
driving in the enemy's pickets. 

On the 18th our forces drew nearer the town, and on the even- 
ing of that day the Eighth Regiment, with some other regiments 
of Ransom's Brigade, made a reconnaissance of the enemy's 
works. The Eighth Regiment formed in a strip of woods 
several hundred yards from the main line of fortifications. A 
battery of artillery was to take position on the left of the Eighth 
Regiment. At the order to advance the regiment moved out of 
the woods into the open field and began pressing and driving 
the enemy's strong skirmish line. The battery of artillery came 
in at a rapid run, and taking position at the left of the Eighth 
Regiment, about three hundred yards from the enemy's works, 
opened a rapid fire on the -main fort in our front. The gun- 
boats in the river also took part in shelling our battery and line. 
One shell from a gun-boat came over the town, struck the ground 
about one hundred and fifty yards in front of the Eighth Regi- 
ment, ncocAe^fed and the next time struck the ground in the line 
of the regiment, exploded, killing and wounding fifteen men of 
Company H. Three of the men were killed outright, two were 
mortally wounded, and of the others, some were severely and 
some slightly wounded. The firing was kept up about. two 
hours, when it ceased, the enemy's forts having been apparently 
silenced. The wounded were carried to the rear during the 
action and the dead buried that night. 

On the 19th nothing except some skirmishing took place in 
the forenoon. In the afternoon the regiment, with Ransom's 
Brigade, was ordered to move around towards the eastern side 
of the town and take position down the river from the enemy's 
works. In attempting to pass Conaby Creek, on that side of 
the town, a sharp fight occurred at the bridge over the stream. 
It was about two o'clock at night before the crossing could be 
effected. The passage of the creek having been forced, the 
brigade formed with its right resting on the river. The posi- 

400 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

tion the Eighth Eegiment held in the brigade placed it directly 
in front of one of the enemy's forts. 

At early dawn on the morning of the 20th the signal rockets 
went up and the order came to advance. In the meantime a 
battery of artillery took position in front of the Eighth Regi- 
ment and opened a rapid fire on the fort in our front. The 
regiment, in fact the • whole brigade, as ordered, moved off in 
common time. Not a rifle was fired, not a word spoken. The 
artillery was doing its full duty in keeping the enemy's infantry 
quiet. When the regiment had advanced to within about one 
hundred and fifty yards of the fort the order to charge was 
given. The "yell" was raised and the regiment rushed forward 
to mount the fort. Just at the moment the "yell" was raised 
the enemy's infantry poured a destructive fire into the ranks of 
the regiment. Our artillery ceased firing as the regiment 
approached near the fort. The men rushed on, leaped into the 
ditch and attempted to scale the fort. While the men were 
attempting to climb over the outside of the fort the enemy 
threw hand-grenades into the ditch. Those who were in the ditch 
had to get out of it. The regiment then swung around to the 
right and attempted to break through the palisades on that side 
of the fort. The palisades had loop-holes, through which the 
enemy fired on our line. At this point many of the men were 
shot through the head. The regiment rushed up to the pali- 
sades, and as the enemy pulled their guns out of the loop-holes 
our men put theirs in and fired at those on the inside. Such 
deadly work could not last long. The Eighth Regiment swung 
a little further around to the gate leading to the rear of the fort. 
The gate was burst open. The regiment rushed in and the fort 
surrendered. "Three cheers for North Carolina" were given by 
the regiment, thus announcing that the assault had been suc- 

One fort having been captured, the line within was easily taken. 
But one strong fort (Fort Williams) remained in possession of 
the enemy. The Eighth Regiment formed and attempted to 
storm that. The men charged up to the edge of the surround- 


1. Jacob E. Earnhardt, Color-bearer, 

Co. H. 

2. MidiiU'l Cook, Corporal, Co. H. 

3. H. T. J. Ludwig, Drummer. 

4. John D. Beaver, Private, Co. H. 

5. Michael C. Ehineheart, Private, Co. H. 

6. eager D. Barringer, Private, Co. H. 

7. Cicero Barker, Drum-Major, Co. K. 

Eighth Eegiment. 401 

ing ditch, only to find that it could not be crossed. There "was 
but oue of two courses to take, to-wit : either to fall back or 
surrender. The regiment chose the former. When the retreat 
began the enemy poured a fearful volley, into the ranks, killing 
and wounding many of the men. This charge was reckless and 
unnecessary. It was made under the flush of victory, not by 
the order of the commanding general. The fort, being sur- 
rounded, would have had to surrender anyhow, as it did a few 
hours afterwards. With the fail of Fort Williams the capture 
of Plymouth was made complete. It was a brilliant victory, 
but the Eighth Regiment paid dearly for its share in it. The 
regiment lost one hundred and fifty-four men killed and wounded, 
about one-third of its number. Lieutenant Langly, Company 
G, was killed, and Captain Cook, Company H, and Lieutenant 
Thompson, Company F, were among the wounded. Francis J. 
Perkins, Company A, color-bearer of the regiment, fell mortally 
wounded on the morning of the 20th. A few days afterwards 
Jacob R. Earnhardt, Company H, was appointed color-bearer. 

To illustrate another phase of war, it may not be without 
interest to narrate an incident or two that occurred on the battle- 
field of Plymouth. The following two are, therefore, given : 

As the ambulance corps was following the regiment, and hav- 
ing come to the point where the first charge began on the morn- 
ing of the 20th, one of the first men they found lying on the 
field was James Misenheimer, of Company H, who was mor- 
tally wounded. A member of the corps went to him and asked 
if he was wounded. He answered yes, that a whole shell had 
gone through him, and that it was from our own artillery. Poor 
fellow, he thought that after passing our battery the artillery 
had shot him. This was a mistake. The artillery fired over 
the heads of the men. He was shot by the enemy's infantry, 
the ball passing through the stomach. He said to the one speak- 
ing to him : "Tom, is that you?" On being told that it was, he 
added: "Write to mother and tell her I am killed." He died 
that day. 


402 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Again, color-bearer Perkins was carried to the rear mortally 
wounded, and as he lay in a barn which had been taken for use 
for the wounded and dying, in conversation with a friend and 
member of the regiment, who was with him, he asked what the 
men thought of his conduct that day. On being told that all 
were praising him for his gallantry, he then said : "If that is so, 
if it were not for my sister, I would not mind dying." 

Thus, among many others, fell two brave men, their last 
thoughts wandering far away to their homes, the one thinking 
of a dear mother living among the hills of Cabarrus, the other 
of a dear sister whom he had left at his home in Virginia. How 
many thousands of similar incidents might be recorded ! How 
many thousands of dying soldiers, whose last thoughts were of 
loved ones at home, but for whom there were no friends present 
to receive the parting messages ! But, then, such is war. 

After a few days' rest at Plymouth the regiment, with the 
other troops of the expedition, began the march to Washington, 
N. C, which place the enemy abandoned on onr approach. Here 
occurred a sharp skirmish with the rearguard of the enemy. 
Lieutenant Caifey, Company I, being among the wounded. 
From Washington we moved in the direction of New Bern, the 
Eighth Regiment crossing the Neuse and Trent Rivers and 
moving around to the southern side of the town. While 
maneuvering around New Bern, preparatory to attacking the 
fortifications, orders came, on the 6th of May, to hasten back to 
Petersburg. The regiment marched to Kinston, took the train 
for Weldon, thence to Petersburg. The enemy had made a raid 
into the country between Weldon and Petersburg, and had 
destroyed the bridge over the Nottoway River, thus rendering it 
necessary for us to march part of the way. Hence our return to 
Petersburg was delayed, but not long enough to be of serious 
consequence. We arrived there in time to prevent the capture 
of the city. 

On our arrival at Petersburg the regiment, having resumed 
its place in Clingman's Brigade, was ordered to Drewry's Bluff. 
The enemy was attempting to cut the communications of Rich- 

Eighth Regiment. 403 

mond with the South, the chief source for supplying Lee's army 
with provisions. An army can exist longer without something 
to shoot than it can without something to eat. A vital point to 
the life of the Confederacy had been threatened. The communi- 
cations of Richmond with the South had to be protected. It 
was evident that there was work ahead for the regiment. 

On the 18th skirmishing began, and the line of battle was 
established. Ransom's* Division forming the left, Hoke's Division 
the right, Clingman's and Corse's Brigades, under the command 
of Brigadier-General Colquitt, being held in reserve. Early on the 
morning of the 16th the battle began, Ransom's Division begin- 
ning the attack. Soon the roar of artillery and the rattle of 
musketry extended to the right. Hoke's Division became hotly 
engaged, and Johnson's Brigade, of that division, was hard 
pressed. The reserves were ordered in and the enemy driven 
back. When the reserves were ordered in tlie Eighth Regiment 
moved forward to the charge with the steadiness characteristic of 
Carolina's soldiers. The enemy's resistance was stubborn and 
the regiment suffered severely. Among the wounded was ex- 
Governor, at that time Captain T. J. Jarvis, of Company B. 
During the greater part of the day the roar of battle was incessant. 
Tl;ie enemy was driven back and at night- fall the two armies 
ceased firing. On the 17th, 18th and 19th skirmishing continued 
with more or less briskness, the enemy being driven back until 
he was compelled to establish his line across Bermuda Hundred 

On the 20th the commanding general, Beauregard, ordered an 
advance. The Eighth Regiment was engaged in the charge, and 
moved forward under a destructive fire against the enemy's line. 
The enemy was forced back, but the regiment suffered again 
severely in both killed and wounded. For five days the regi- 
ment had been engaged either in battle or heavy skirmishing 
against superior numbers. The men in both armies seemed to 
have been worn out. 

After the 20th affairs along the line were comparatively still. 

'Commanded by Major-Gen eral Robert Ransom. His older brother, Brigadier-General 
BI. W. Ransom, commanded a brigade in the same division. 

404 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

Some light skirmishiog was all that occurred to disturb the gen- 
eral quietude that prevailed. General Beauregard in his report 
of these operations, says: "Too much praise cannot be given to 
the oiEcers and men who fought the battle of Drewry's Bluff." 
During the five days' fighting at Drewry's Bluff and Bermuda 
Hundred Neck the Eighth Eegiment lost between eighty and 
one hundred officers and men killed and wounded. Among the 
officers wounded were Captain Cook, Company H, and Captain 
Hines, Company G. 

Hoke's Division was now ordered to re-inforce Lee's Army, 
which had just fought the great battles of the Wilderness and 
Spottsylvania Court House. Oo the 30th of May we boarded 
the train, arriving at Richmond that day, and thence marching 
towards Cold Harbor. On the 31st Clingman's Brigade crossed 
the Chickahominy at Gaines' Mill and moved in the direction of 
the enemy. It was in the afternoon of the 31st that the opera- 
tions culminating in the battle of Cold Harbor began. The 
Eighth Regiment was attacked by' the enemy's cavalry in flank 
and rear, losing a considerable number of men killed, wounded 
and captured. The regiment had to fall back and take a new 
position, which was strengthened during the night, preparatory 
to meeting the expected attack on the following day. 

On June the 1st the enemy's infantry advanced in heavy force 
against our line. The Eighth Regiment formed the extreme left 
of Hoke's Division, Anderson's Division coming next. There 
was an interval between the left of the regiment and the right 
of Anderson's Division, caused by what was thought to be an 
impassable swamp. Through that swamp and interval the enemy 
forced his way. The Eighth Regiment was attacked in front, 
flank and rear. The enemy charged up to the line of works 
which had been prepared hurriedly during the previous night. 
A furious fight ensued. The regiment held its line for some 
time, but was forced back, though not in defeat. The men rallied 
and in turn charged the enemy. For a while the enemy stood, 
but finally the pressure became too great. He gave way, but 
rallied and charged our line a second time. Again the regiment 
was forced back. Again it rallied and drove the enemy before 

Eighth Regiment. 405 

it. This alternate giving way and rallying continued till it was 
repeated the sixth or seventh time, when the regiment succeeded 
in establishing and holding its line, a short distance in rear of 
the original position held in the morning. 

On the 2d nothing occurred except some light skirmishing. 
On the morning of the 3d, at about 5 o'clock, the enemy assaulted 
our line, but was easily repulsed. The battle of Cold Harbor 
ended on the 3d. The Eighth Regiment lost in this battle, May 
31st, June 1st, 2d and 3d, something near two hundred and 
seventy-five officers and men killed, wounded and captured. Our 
gallant Lieutenant-Colonel, John R. Murchison, commanding the 
regiment, was killed on Juoe 1st while leading the second charge. 
Major R. A. Barrier being at the hospital, Captain P. A. Ken- 
nerly, of Company K, the senior captain, then succeeded in 
command and gallantly led the regiment in another charge, when 
the regiment, rushing on, drove the enemy back and re-established 
the line. The regiment having to fight the enemy in two direc- 
tions, on flank and in front, was cut to pieces. Among the 
company officers. Lieutenant Ritchie, Company H, was wounded, 
and Captain Leonard A. Henderson, Company F, was killed in 
the third charge, while gallantly leading his company. 

(It should be stated in justice to Colonel Whitson that, hav- 
ing leave of absence to return to his home in Currituck county, 
and having been captured while there, he was not in the battles 
of Plymouth and those following, not getting back to the regi- 
ment during the war). 

After the death of Lieutenant-Colonel Murchison, Major R. 
A. Barrier was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel and commanded 
the regiment till the close of the war. 

On the 14th Hoke's Division was ordered to Petersburg. The 
regiment arrived at that point on the 16th, in -the afternoon. 
There was no time to be lost. The enemy was advancing. The 
line of battle was formed in the works around that city and the 
approach of the enemy awaited. We were not long in waiting. 
Our pickets were driven in and our lines assaulted. Two attacks 
were made, both of which were repulsed. This battle was fought 

406 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

over the same ground where the snow-ball fight took place in 
March between the Eighth and Fifty-first North Carolina Eegi- 
ments, the enemy occupying the place where the Eighth Regi- 
ment camped, the Eighth where the Fifty-first camped. 

On the morning of the 17th the firing began early. All fore- 
noon there was heavy skirmishing. About 5 P. M. it was evident 
that a heavy assault on our line was contemplated. The enemy 
was massing his troops in our front. Just before dark the assault 
was made. The enemy succeeded in breaking the line occupied 
by the brigade on our immediate right and rushed his forces' into 
the breach thus made. The Eighth Regiment was ordered to 
assist ib driving the enemy out and regaining the line. The 
work was done quickly and the line re-established. After several 
hours' fighting the enemy retired, leaving our line unbroken. 

On the following morning, the 18th, sometime before day we 
were ordered to fall back to a new and shorter line. The part 
of the new line occupied by the Eighth Regiment was in an open 
field. The enemy appeared in heavy force, advancing with three 
lines of battle in our front. It was in the forenoon, in the light 
of a brilliant June sun, that the lines advanced in a clear open 
field. If there had not been other and more serious things to 
consider, the military display might have been looked upon as a 
grand one. But we were not there to look at military displays. 
The business our men had in view was to spoil such displays. 
This they proceeded to do. A heavy fire was opened on the 
advancing lines. They made a rush for a hollow or ravine in 
our front, some three or four hundred yards distant, and there 
established their line. No assault was made on our part of the 
line on the 18th, but during the greater part of the day the regi- 
ment was exposed to a heavy artillery fire, but few casualties, 
however, happening from that cause. On the 16th and 17th,, 
particularly the 17th, the regiment suffered quite severely in both 
killed and wounded. The regiment by this time did not num- 
ber many more than a good sized company. 

On the 19th the regiment was ordered to take position in the 
line of works next to the Appomattox River, thus forming the 

Eighth Regiment. 407 

extreme left of the army oa the south side of that river. Here 
we lived practically in the ground. We walked in ditches, ate 
in ditches, and slept in pits. The enemy's main line in our front 
was about three hundred yards distant. The picket lines were 
much nearer, probably not more than sixty or seventy yards 
apart. No pickets could be kept out in day-time. Hardly a 
day passed that the enemy did not fire on us from the battery 
immediately in our front, or from mortar batteries to our right. 

On the 30th of July the mine was sprung. One regiment of 
Clingman's Brigade was ordered to the scene of the explosion. 
The others that remained had to fill the gap thus made in the 
line. The men of the Eighth Regiment stood one yard apart. 
This thin line was kept up until the regiment that had been 
drawn out returned. 

On the 19th of August the regiment was drawn out of the 
trenches to take part in attacking a strong force of the enemy 
that had moved towards the Petersburg &Weldon Railroad. The 
line of battle was formed and the charge made. The Eighth Regi- 
ment had to advance through a dense thicket, as did the whole 
brigade, or rather the whole of Mahone's Division, to which we 
were attached that day. The division became scattered in the 
charge and some of the men were captured ; some captured and 
recaptured twice. It was a thorough mixture in the woods. Front 
and rear seemed to be on all sides. The bullets came from every 
direction. The victory, however, was on our side. About three 
thousand of the enemy were captured. Mahone's Division was 
ordered to camp in order that the men might be got together. 
In a few days we were ordered to our old position on the south 
bank of the Appomattox. In this battle General Clingman was 
wounded. The Eighth Regiment lost several killed, wounded 
and captured. Among the wounded was Lieutenant McAllister, 
of Company H. 

We remained in the trenches on the south bank of the Appo- 
mattox till the 29th of September, when Hoke's Division was 
ordered to Richmond. Arriving at that point, the division 
marched in the direction of Fort Harrison, on the road leading 

408 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

down the James River. On the 30th the brigade was drawn up 
in line of battle for the purpose of assaulting Fort Harrison, 
which had been captured by the enemy on the 28th. Ciingman's 
and Colquitt's Brigades were to make the assault directly on the 
fort, Ciingman's leading and Colquitt's following. The enemy 
was well prepared to receive the assaulting lines. The line hav- 
ing been formed, the charge was ordered. It was a charge in 
open day, over open ground, about two hundred yards to the fort. 
The Eighth Regiment formed behind a low hill. When the 
order to advance was given the men moved forward with a rapid, 
run. The order was not to fire until the fort was reached. As 
soon as the forward movement began, and the regiment had got 
to the top of the little hill, the enemy opened a terrific fire on 
the advancing line. Before it got to the fort the regiment was 
almost annihilated. 

The regiment went into the assault on Fort Harrison with 
about one hundred and seventy-five men and officers. That 
night there were only twenty-five, commanded by Lieutenant 
Dugger, of Company F. The others were killed, wounded and 
captured. The color-bearer, J. R. Baruhardt, finding that he 
could not escape capture, tore the old flag that had seen so much 
service to pieces to keep it from falling into the hands of the 
enemy. Of the color-guard, Robert W. Sawyer, Company K, 
was killed, and Joseph N. Spence, Company A, was wounded. 
John V. Fisher, Company H, was then appointed color- bearer, 
and carried the flag till the end of the war, Earnhardt having 
been captured and not getting back to the regiment. 

The regiment went into camp for a few days. On the 6th of 
October orders were giveu to prepare rations and to get ready to 
march. Detailed men and others came in after the assault on 
Fort Harrison, and increased the number of the regiment, but it 
was still small. At night, soon after dark, we moved out of 
camp. The next morning, the 7th, we were on the Darbytown 
road. Our forces made an attack on the enemy's line. The 
Eighth Regiment was held in reserve. For several hours we 
were exposed to a heavy artillery fire. No casualties occurred 
that day. We returned in the evening and went into camp. 

Eighth Regiment. 409 

When the line was re-established after the fall of Fort Harri- 
son the Eighth Regiment was assigned to duty on that part near 
the Darbytown road. We were put to work throwing up breast- 
works. On the 13th the enemy made a strong demonstration 
against our line, but did not assault it. On the 27th the enemy 
made another strong demonstration in our front, but did not 
assault the line. The skirmishing was heavy, but the regiment 
did not suffer severely. After the 27th of October the regiment 
continued in the line near the Darbytown road until the latter 
part of December, nothing important occurring, only an occa- 
sional light skirmish. 

On the 22d of December we took the train at Richmond, 
Hoke's Division having been ordered to Wilmington, N. C. The 
ride from Richmond to Danville was bitter cold. We were put 
in box-cars, where it was not possible to have fires. Some of the 
men suffered very much from the cold. Owing to the lack of 
transportation, we had to march from Danville to Greensboro. 
Thence the regiment proceeded by rail to Wilmington, arriving 
at that place on the 28th. 

On our arrival at Wilmington we were ordered to old Camp 
Whiting till the 12th of January, 1865, at which time the 
enemy's fleet made its appearance, approaching Fort Fisher the 
second time. We were ordered to proceed, without delay, to 
Sugar Loaf, about four miles from Fort Fisher. We arrived at 
Sugar Loaf on the 13th, and at once commenced throwing up a 
line of works. About the time of our arrival at Sugar Loaf 
the enemy succeeded, under protection of his fleet, in landing 
his forces at Fort Fisher. A strong defensive line was established 
between our line and the fort, thus cutting off the fort from com- 
munication by land. Every foot of ground between our line 
and the fort was in easy range of the guns of the enemy's fleet. 
No line of battle could have existed under the enfilading fire of 
the fleet and exposed to a heavy infantry fire in front, if the 
attempt should have been made to assault the enemy's line. 
Hence an assault being impracticable, the force at Sugar Loaf 
could do nothing more than prepare to meet the enemy, should 

410 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

he attempt to move towards Wilmington. Accordingly, we 
were worked night and day, until our line presented a strong 
appearance. In addition to the working on the breastworks, 
light skirmishing was frequent, and oftentimes we were exposed 
to heavy firing from the fleet. 

On Sunday, January 15th, the assault on Fort Fisher was 
made. The attack began about 3:30 p. m. and continued about 
seven hours. While the battle was going on we made a demon- 
stration in the direction of the fort, but nothing could be done. 
It would have been a sacrifice of men without accomplishing any 
definite result, except it would have been the destruction of our 

After the fall of Fort Fisher the regiment continued at Sugar 
Loaf, strengthening the line, skirmishing occasionally, and fre- 
quently receiving the attention of the enemy's fleet, which from 
its position, just off Carolina Beach, was in easy firing distance 
of our works. On the 11th of February the enemy attacked 
our picket line with a strong force, driving in the pickets, but 
did not assault our works. The skirmishing continued with 
more or less briskness each day till the" 18th, when the regiment 
received orders to fall back towards Wilmington. This we did 
to a point within about five miles of the city, where we made a 
stand and awaited the approach of the enemy. On the night of 
the 21st our main army withdrew, the Eighth Regiment follow- 
ing early on the morning of the 22d, and covering the retreat. 

The regiment marched through Wilmington about 10 A. M. 
As we marched out on one side of the city the enemy came in on 
the other. The line of march was towards the ferry across 
Northeast River. The enemy pushed close up to our rearguard. 
At the creek, about one mile from the city, he followed so closely 
that the bridge could not be destroyed. It was then practically 
a fight from the creek to the river. The enemy had to be held 
in check to enable our army and wagon-train to cross the river. 
The last mile to the river was hotly contested. The regiment 
held its ground and retarded the advance of the enemy's force. 
As the regiment approached the river the enemy pressed the 

Eighth Eegiment. 411 

harder, always to be received with sharp firing. When the pon- 
toon across the river was reached the men filed across. As the 
last man entered the pontoon on the sonth side of the river it 
was cut loose from that bank, and that end swung around down 
the river. As the pontoon floated around our rear pickets came 
across. As our last man left the bridge at the north bank of the 
river the enemy appeared on the south bank. The pontoon was 
lost. It could not be got out of the river under fire of the 
enemy's sharp-shooters. 

As the regiment crossed the river the men deployed on the 
north bank. The river having put a stop to the advance of the 
enemy, a line of pickets was left along the bank, while the re- 
maining part of the regiment moved back about two hundred 
yards to a small elevation and began throwing up breastworks 
in line with the part of the army that had preceded us. 

The regiment never performed finer service than it did in 
covering the retreat from Wilmington to Northeast River. The 
fact that the enemy was pressing us and that our army was re- 
treating had no perceptible effect upon the coolness and delibera- 
tion of the men. When the enemy came too close the line was 
formed and his progress checked. Then the march was resumed 
till the enemy came too close again. The men seemed to appre- 
ciate the importance of the duty they were performing.' The 
safety of the army, and especially of the wagon-train, depended 
upon the steadiness with which they maintained their ground. 
How well the duty was performed is told above. 

After resting a few days at Northeast River, the regiment 
received orders to go to Kinston, against which place the enemy 
was marching with a strong force. We arrived at Kinston on 
the 8th of March, and were ordered to a point called Wise's 
Forks, a few miles from town, in the direction of New Bern. We 
were not long in meeting the enemy, and the battle began. The 
regiment was engaged more or less during the 8th, 9th and 10th, 
the three days the battle continued. At times the fighting was 
severe and the regiment lost quite a number of its men. 

On the night of the 10th orders came about midnight to 
march. We then set out for Goldsboro, thence to Smithfield. 

412 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

where we rested a day or two, when orders came to move to 

On the 19th of March we effected a union with the Western 
Army. The battle of Bentonville began in the forenoon, the 
Eighth Regiment being held in reserve during that day. On the 
night of the 19th the regiment established the line on the ex- 
treme left of Johnston's army. Light skirmishing was all that 
occurred oq the 20th, but on the 21st the enemy made a heavy 
demonstration against our part of the line, driving in our pick- 
ets, though not assaulting the main line. On the night of the 
21st our army withdrew towards Smithfield. The Eighth 
Regiment being on the extreme left, was the last to come out, 
leaving before daylight on the morning of the 22d. Here again, 
as at Wilmington, the regiment had to protect the rear. The 
enemy pressed our rear picket guard closely till we crossed the 
creek near by on our line of march. After crossing the creek 
the regiment deployed and began constructing a line of rifle-pits 
along the bank. In the meantime the skirmishing continued, 
the enemy coming nearer as our rearguard fell back. Sometime 
after sunrise, while the regiment was at work, a stray shot struck 
a man from Company I, inflicting a severe flesh wound in the 
thick part of the thigh. He was the last man the regiment had 
wounded. The rifle-pits along the creek were the last the regi- 
ment constructed. We remained there a few hours, then marched 
to Smithfield. The loss of the regiment at Bentonville was not 

We remained in camp at Smithfield about three weeks, when 
orders came to prepare for marching. When the order to march 
was given we proceeded towards Raleigh, passing through that 
place, thence through Chapel Hill, forming the rear of Hardee's 
Corps. From Chapel Hill we proceeded to Haw River, which 
we crossed at RufBn's mill. The river having swollen on ac- 
count of the recent rains, it had to be crossed on the rocks above 
the ford. The water was generally waist-deep, sometimes when 
on a rock not so deep, then deeper as the rock was stepped off. 
It was rough wading. 

Eighth Regiment. 413 

When the regiment was crossing the railroad, before arriving 
at Chapel Hill, Governor Vance was at that point on a train, 
bound for some point west. The men seeing the Governor, one 
of them called out in a loud voice: "Hello, Governor, where 
are you going?" The Governor, who was taking the situation 
as cheerfully as he could, replied: " To the western part of the 
State to prepare a spout for you all to go up." The train moved 
off. We made no halt. 

From Ruffin's mill we proceeded to Alamance River, which 
had become impassable till the Eighth Regiment got there. The 
water was up to the armpits of the last men that preceded us, 
and the river still rising. While at this ford we heard the last 
hostile cannon that was fired in our part of the army. It was 
at Haw River, between our own and the enemy's cavalry forces. 
It being impossible to cross at this ford, we were ordered to 
Holt's factory, a short distance up the river, where the ford was 
not so deep. The I'egiment crossed here, the water coming up to 
the cartridge-boxes of the men. 

Having crossed Alamance River, we proceeded to Bush Hill, 
now Archdale, Randolph county, where news of Lee's surrender 
was received. In a few days news also came that Johnston was 
capitulating for a surrender to Sherman at Durham. On 26 April 
the army surrendered, on 2 May the regiment was paroled, and 
the men returned to their homes. The war was over. 

Thus closed the term of service of the Eighth Regiment 
North Carolina State Troops. During the three years and eight 
months of service about thirteen hundred men and officers had 
enlisted in the regiment. Of that number there were about one 
hundred and fifty present when the end came. Some were in prison, 
some were absent on account of sickness and wounds, many were 
dead, having been killed in battle or died of wounds or disease. 
During the war, counting skirmishes, battles and sieges, the 
regiment had been under fire on or about two hundred separate 
occasions. In honor to the officers and men who composed the 
regiment, it is but jusfto say that they never refused to move 
forward when ordered, or to rally when pressed back by the 

414 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

enemy. They went where duty called them. The best of 
soldiers can do no more. The history they made belongs to 
North Carolina. 

Before closing I wish to say a word or two to the survivors 
with reference to what has been written above. The sketch has 
been prepared by request. I feel that it may not be as full as it 
should be. I have tried to take the survivors over the ground 
upon which they marched and fought during the days of 1861 to 
1865. Having been an eye-witness to all, or nearly all that is 
related, I do not believe that anything of importance has been 
omitted. There were many deeds of heroism, both among offi- 
cers and men. Bravery was not to hunt. If some one per- 
formed a daring deed it did not signify that he was the only one 
to perform it. The deeds done by any particular one would 
have been performed with equal gallantry by others if duty had 
required it. 

I regret that I could not see more members of the regi- 
ment than I did. I feel that it is due the parties to say that I 
am indebted to C. R. Barker, Company K, Drum-major of the 
regiment, and to the officers and members of Company H, for 
valuable help when there were any doubts as to the facts I wished 
to relate. The "Roster of North Carolina Troops" and the "War 
Records," published by the Government at Washington, have 
been consulted and used when they would give the information 
wanted. It was not practical to mention the names of all the 
killed and wounded. That has been done, probably as well 
as it will ever be done, in the roster published by the State. It 
was suggested that it would be sufficient to mention the officers 
who were either killed or wounded. In attempting to carry out 
that suggestion, doubtless there are some omissions, but they 
could not be avoided, as the casualties given in the roster are by 
no means complete, and it is hardly possible that after the lapse 
of thirty-five years one would remember so many names, the most 
of which were strange. 

I have done the best I could. If tRe narrative here given 
shall contribute in any way to perpetuating the memory of those 

Eighth Regiment. 415 

who stood devoted to their country, and of those who died for 

what they conceived to be the right, the labor required has not 

been performed in vain. 

H. T. J. LuDWiG. 

Mt. Pleasant, N. C., 

26 April, 1900. 


1. Robert Ransom, Colonel. 

2. L. S. Baker, Colone:. 

3. James B. Cordon, Colonel. 

4. Rllfiis Biirrinjer, Captain, Co. F. 

5. W. II. Cheek, Colonel. 

0. W. II. II. Cowles, Lieiit.-Colonel. 

7. A. B. Andrews, Captain, Co. B. 

8. W. E. Wood, Captain, Co. B. 

0. W. II. Anthony, Captain, Co. B. 



By brigadier-general rufus barringer. 

The formation of the ten regiments of State Troops was a wise 
step in the organization of the North Carolina forces. These 
ten thousand men were made up of the very pick and flower of 
the State — all enlisted for the war, and so forming a model for 

No one of these ten regiments attracted so much attention as 
the Ninth, afterwards known as the First Cavalry. In the 
selection of company officers and the field and staff, Governor 
Ellis took special interest. The colonel and lieutenant-colonel, 
Robert Ransom and Lawrence S. Baker, were fresh from the 
cavalry of the United States Army, while the two majors, James 
B. Gordon and Victor C. Barringer, represented the best capacity 
and courage of civil life. The companies were selected with great 
care, from numerous tenders, all over the State. The enlist- 
ments were nearly all in May and June, 1861, and the first ren- 
dezvous was early in July at Asheville; but about August 1st 
the companies at Asheville were removed to Camp Beauregard, 
at Ridgeway, Warren county, which was made a regular school 
of drill, discipline and cavalry exercise and life. No troops ever 
went through a severer ordeal. At times and on occasions there 
were loud complaints against Colonel Ransom for the rigid rules 
and harsh measures adopted. Exception was specially taken to 
the line of promotion as used in the United States Army, instead 
of the volunteer system; but the great majority of both men 
and officers bore the severity of the service with patriotic forti- 
tude, and enjoyed the ups and downs of the drill and the jests 
and jeers of camp-life with infinite humor. So, by the middle 

418 NoETH Carolina Tboops, 1861-'65. 

of October all was ready for the march to Manassas, to aid in 
guarding and holding the rapidly extending lines of General 
Joseph E. Johnston. The final roster largely reduced the ranks 
of oflScers, men and animals alike, as also all surplus baggage 
and other impediments. Among other changes, the second Major 
resigned, and the place was left unfilled so as to conform to the 
other nine regiments. 

The several companies were designated and commanded as 
follows : 

Company A — Ashe County — Captain, T. N. Crumpler. 
Company B — Northampton County — Captain, John H. Whit- 

Company C — Mecklenburg County — Captain, J. M. Miller. 
Company D — Watauga County — Captain, George N. Folk. 
Company E — Warren County — Captain, W. H. Cheek. 
Company F — Cabarrus County — Captain, Rufus Barringer. 
Company G — Buncombe County — Captain, W. E.. Wood. 
Company H — Wayne County — Captain, Thomas Ruffin. 
Company I — Duplin County — Captain, W. J. Houston. 
Company JL— Macon County — Captain, Thaddeus. P. Siler. 

The officers represented the best character and military skill 
of the State — one being an ex-member of Congress. Four of 
them, Crumpler, Houston, Ruffin and Whitaker, fell in battle. 
Five of the others were wounded or otherwise disabled in the 
service. To recount the endless marches and actions in which 
they were engaged, would exceed the limits of this sketch. It 
is only proposed to notice briefly the leading battles and actions 
in which the regiment, as a whole, took part. Here also it is 
proper to call attention to the use of cavalry — especially in 
America, where forests and other impediments so often interfered 
with mounted operations. It was soon found that in this new 
oountry, even more than in the old world, that the best use of 
cavalry was to make it act as the eyes and ears of the array. 
But with even these limitations, it is estimated that the First 
Cavalry was engaged in nearly one hundred and fifty actions. 

Ninth Regiment. 419 

These actions were often far to the front, or on the distant flank, 
or in covering a retreat, usually without support of which 
no official reports were made, and of which the main army rarely 
hedrd. Yet in this way multitudes of the best youth and man- 
hood in the land constantly perished, and now occupy unknown 

On the march to Manassas nothing special occurred, except 
that at Richmond President Davis reviewed us in person and 
the people turned out en masse to see the parade. All agreed 
that, up to this time, no such trained Confederate cavalry had 
been seen in Virginia. 

At Manassas we did duty on the advanced lines in front of 
Centreville, with a constant round of alarms, surprises and dis- 
tant picket shots, often attended with amusing incident and per- 
sonal adventure. On the 26th of November occurred our first 
regular fight near the village of Vienna, fifteen miles out from 
Alexandria. Colonel Ransom, with about two hundred chosen 
men, managed to surprise a Yankee scout of about the same 
number, and effectually routed them, killing several and taking 
twenty-six prisoners. This was a great feather in our cap, and 
a source of much rejoicing, both in catnp and among friends at 

Up to December the cavalry at Manassas was without brigade 
organization; but in that month General J. E. B. Stuart formed 
the First Brigade, composed of the First, Second, Fourth and 
Sixth Virginia, the Ninth North Carolina (First Cav.)and the Jeff 
Davis Legion. Stuart went at once to work, and on the 20th of 
December sent a large number of wagons to secure a valuable 
supply of forage near the enemy's lines at Dranesville; all under 
an escort of both infantry and cavalry. The Yankee general, 
Ord, however, was too fast for Stuart ; a severe action ensued, 
with a narrow escape of the trains and a loss to Stuart of one 
hundred and ninety-four men. An incident on this occasion, 
gave quite a repute to the regimental wagon-master, Jacob Dove, 
of Company F. When Colonel Ransom heard of the disaster, 
and asked if his teams were safe, the reply was: "Yes; Jacob 

420 North Carolina Troops, 186 1-'65. 

Dove not only brought out his teams, but brought them loaded, 
and even made them jump fences." 

Early in March, 1862, General Johnston evacuated Manassas, 
and about the same time it was found that Burnside was sailing 
for an attack on the coast of North Carolina. So the Ninth 
Regiment was at once ordered to that State, and took position 
near Kinston, where we remained until about the middle of June, 
when we were ordered back to Richmond to co-operate in the 
battles threatening that city. On the 29th of June a portion of 
the Ninth with the Third Virginia Cavalry, both under Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Baker, was ordered to make a reconnaissance 
around McCIellan's army. The North Carolinians were in 
front, and struck the Yankee line at Willis' Church. A mounted 
charge was immediately ordered, which led through a long lane 
up to the Yankee camp. In an instant the artillery and infantry 
of the enemy opened upon our devoted heads, all huddled up in 
the lane, where orders and maneuvers were alike impossible. 
At the first round sixty-three of the Ninth North Carolina were 
put hors de combat, and the whole command was forced to retire 
in utter confusion. Among the mortally wounded was the gallant 
(now) Major T. N. Crumpler, universally lamented. This dis- 
aster served as a wholesome lesson in making mounted charges. 

During the next two days we were in the dreadful battles of 
Frazier's Farm and Malvern Hill, and then took an active part 
in the pursuit of McClellan to Harrison's Landing. For a 
month following we covered the main front of Lee's army below 
Richmond, fighting almost daily— especially at Phillips' Farm, 
Riddle's Shop and Turkey Creek. 

During this time Colonel Ransom had been promoted and 
transferred to the infantry — making Baker Colonel, Gordon 
Lieutenant-Colonel, and Whitaker Major. And on the 26th of 
July the cavalry was reorganized under Stuart as Major-General, 
with Wade Hampton and Fitzhugh Lee as Brigadiers. We 
were in the Hampton Brigade, composed as follows : 

First, Ninth North Carolina (First Cav.), Colonel Baker. 

Second, Cobb Legion, Lieutenant-Colonel Young. 

Ninth Regiment. 421 

Third, Jeff Davis Legion, Lieutenant-Colonel Martin. 

Fourth, Hampton Legion, Major Butler. 

Fifth, Tenth Virginia, Lieutenant-Colonel McGruder. 

We were soon called to the stirring scenes attending Pope's 
retreat at the Second Manassas and Jackson's great flank move- 
ment — fighting severely at Fox's Farm and at Fairfax Court 
House — where we fell, during a night march, into another 

Immediately followed the first invasion of Maryland. And now 
came, almost daily and hourly, contests with the Federal cavalry — 
notably atUrbana, Frederick, Middletown,Catoctin Creek, Buck- 
ittsville and Pleasant Valley — culminating in the capture of 
Harper's Ferry by Jackson and the drawn battle of Sharpsburg, 
the Ninth Regiment being in all of these. 

At Sharpsburg we were on the extreme left, and when Gen- 
eral Lee recrossed the Potomac we were cut off from the regular 
ford, and had to seek a blind crossing, which we made at night 
in water over girth-deep and filled with rock, brush and every 
possible obstruction. This was even worse than fighting. 

At last there came to both armies some weeks of much-needed 
rest. Once only General Pleasanton crossed the river and made an 
attack on our lines at Martinsburg, which being promptly met 
he soon retired. 

During this time the Phillips Legion, from Georgia, was added 
to the Hampton Brigade. On the 9th of October Stuart started 
on his famous horse raid into Pennsylvania. The force consisted 
of one thousand eight hundred picked men and animals, with 
four guns and five days' rations. It was at that time a most 
daring and entirely novel achievement. In three days and two 
nights this small force crossed the Potomac, made a circuit of 
the Federal army, and, by means of special details, gathered up 
• and safely brought out one thousand two hundred led horses. 

At Chambersburg we destroyed immense army stores and at 
other points inflicted serious damage to trains and telegraph 
lines. But so admirably was the expedition planned and carried 
out, that our only loss was one man wounded and two captured. 

422 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

though often assailed by the enemy. On the march the Ninth 
North Carolina was called on for much conspicuous duty. Lieu- 
tenant Barrier, of Company I, was in charge of the advance 
party in crossing the Potomac above Williamsport, while Captain 
Cowles, of Company A, covered the recrossing near Poolsville, 
in each instance under severe firing. When Stuart was approach- 
ing his old headquarters at Urbana on his midnight march a 
fancy struck him to make a call on some rebel lady friends at 
that place, two miles off the regular line of march, and he called 
for Captain Barringer, with his squadron detail of C and F, and 
safely made the venture, though almost surrounded by Yankee 

Shortly after this, General McClellan crossed his army over 
the Potomac below Harper's Ferry and started for his new base 
at Fredericksburg. This was followed by almost daily and 
nightly conflicts with the Federal cavalry at Gaines' Cross Roads, 
at Little Washington, Bar bee's Cross Roads, Amisville, and a 
dozen other sharp actions. At Warren ton, on the 7th of Novem- 
ber, McClellan was superseded by Burnside, and the fighting 
again measurably ceased till the battle of Fredericksburg, Decem- 
ber 13, 1862. Meantime the Hampton Cavalry held the 
upper fords and we made several successful raids on the Yankee 
rear at Dumfries and Oicoquan, capturing wagon trains, sutlers' 
stores and all sorts of Christmas good things. 

After Burnside's terrible repulse at Fredericksburg there was 
no serious work between the two armies until May, at Chancel- 
lorsville, but, nevertheless, the cavalry was kept busy, and the 
Hampton Brigade from its camp, near Stevensburg, continued to 
raid the enemy at every available point — on one occasion pene- 
trating as far as Burke's Station and Fairfax Court House, and 
on another the North Carolinians fighting nearly single-handed, 
under Colonel Baker, the hot action at Kelly's Ford. So, also,, 
on the 17th of March, at Kellysville, occurred one of the heavy 
cavalry battles of the war. Here the gallant Pelham, of the 
Stuart Horse Artillery, was killed. 

As the summer opened it was observed that each army was 

Ninth Regiment. 423 

concentrating large bodies on the upper Rappaiiannoek — indicat- 
ing oifensive movements. Stuart was in Culpeper county, 
around Brandy Station, one of the few large open plains admira- 
bly suited for cavalry movements. On the 8th of June General 
R. E. Lee had a grand review of all his cavalry at that point — 
numbering eight thousand to ten thousand men. That night 
Stuart also gave a splendid ball at Culpeper Court House. The 
next morning he was to cross the Rappahannock and take posi- 
tion so as to cover the initiatory movement of General Lee in 
his march to Pennsylvania, but Pleasanton was too quick for 
him. At early dawn the Federal cavalry, with infantry sup- 
ports, forced the passage of the Rappahannock at all available 
points and fell upon Stuart while the men were still at break- 
fast. The main action began at Beverly Ford, above the rail- 
road, and while Stuart was arranging to meet this attack it was 
suddenly discovered that the lower column, at Kelly's Ford, 
had succeeded in driving off all opposition, and was now actually 
in the Confederate rear. 

Stuart's headquarters were at the Fleetwood house, about 
midway between the two advancing Federal columns. Never 
was a crisis more critical for a great cavalry leader. But Stuart 
was always equal to the emergency. With a mere handful of 
cannoneers and a single small Virginia regiment at Fleetwood, 
he boldly met the rear attack under Gregg, while with equal 
boldness he withdrew Hampton and Jones from the front 
advance of Buford, leaving W. H. F. Lee to resist Buford as 
best he could. And now opened the grandest cavalry fight of 
the war — from eighteen to twenty thousand mounted men charg- 
ing and counter-charging all over the immense plains of Brandy, 
and through the long hours of a summer's sun and with ever- 
varying results. In the thickest of the fight apd the longest in the 
field were the Ninth North Carolina (First Cav.) and the Jeff Davis 
Legion, led respectively by Colonel Baker and Lieutenant- 
Colonel Waring. The Confederate dash and valor at last carried 
the day. Late in the evening Pleasanton was forced =to retire 
and recross the river, with a loss of nine hundred and thirty- 

424 North Carolina Troops, 1861-65. 

six men killed and wounded and .five hundred prisoners. The 
Confederate loss was five hundred and twenty-three. The loss was 
unusually heavy in Confederate ofScers. Colonel Sol. Williams, of 
the Nineteenth North Carolina (Second Cav.), and Lieutenant-Col- 
onel Frank Hampton, of the Second South Carolina, were killed; 
Brigadier-General W. H. F. Lee, Colonel M. C. Butler, Colonel 
A. W. Harmon and (acting) Major Rufus Barringer, with many 
others, were severely wounded. Major McClellan, of Stuart's staff, 
in his life of Stuart, makes special mention of the "splendid work 
done by the First North Carolina Cavalry." He also gives the 
Federal force as ten thousand nine hundred and eighty; Stuart's, 
nine thousand five hundred and thirty-six. Next followed the 
advance into Pennsylvania, Stuart covering Lee's right flank, 
and for ten days resisting incessant attacks of Pleasanton at 
Aldie, Middleburg, Upperville and Fairfax. Again the loss 
was heavy in North Carolina ofScers; Colonel Peter G. Evans, 
of the Sixty-third North Carolina (Fifth Cav.), Major John 
H. Whitaker and Captain W. J. Houston, of the Ninth North 
Carolina (First Cav.), were killed. 

Immediately followed in rapid succession, the great move- 
ment culminating at Gettysburg, July 1st —3d. While the main 
army was crossing the upper Potomac near Shepherdstown, Stuart 
was still east of the Blue Ridge, watching the movements of 
Hooker. On the night of the 27th Stuart also crossed the 
Potomac at Rowser's Ford, only eighteen miles above Washing- 
ton, his immediate force being the three brigades of Hampton, 
of Fitzhugh Lee and W. H. F. Lee. But Stuart now found 
himself between Hooker and Washington, and it was difficult to 
tell what might be the result of future movements, and he at last 
resolved to attempt the entire circuit of the Federal army. At 
Rockville he succeeded in capturing a Federal supply train of 
one hundred and twenty-five wagons and teams; also four hun- 
dred prisoners, some in full view of Washington. He paroled 
the prisoners, but decided to take the wagons and teams with 
him. Tliis incumbrance proved a serious drawback in his future 
movements and probably prevented his rejoining General Lee 

Ninth Regiment. 425 

until the second day of the Gettysburg fight, July 2d. On this 
account General Stuart had been severely criticised, but it is cer- 
tain that his action was within the discretion given him. The 
wagons and teams proved of great help to General Lee in his 
forced retreat after the battle. 

Beginning at Brookville, on the 28th of June, this small 
cavalry force of less than three thousand men penetrated the 
enemy's country as far as Carlisle, Penn., where it burned the 
Federal barracks, and in five days and nights fought more than 
a dozen actions, and finally came out successful on the afternoon 
of the 2d of July at Gettysburg. The principal fights were at 
Sykesville, Littletown, Hanover, Hunterstown and Carlisle. In 
front of Gettysburg, too, the Hampton Brigade bore the brunt 
of a severe fight, in which General Hampton himself was twice 
painfully wounded, and the command devolved on Colonel Baker, 
of the Ninth North Carolina (First Cav.), leaving Lieutenant-Col- 
onel Gordon in charge of the latter. Here also a gallant North 
Carolinian, Sergeant Fulghum, succeeded in rescuing the wounded 
Hampton, in the very nick of time, from capture and possible 

With the exception of the action referred to there was no 
severe fighting of mounted troops at Gettysburg. The wbrk 
of death in those three dreadful days was chiefly from in- 
trenched infantry and artillery on fortified heights, assailable 
only by bayonet charges and hand-to hand conflicts. So, like- 
wise, there was no serious engagement during the retreat of 
General Lee until the 13th of July, at Falling Waters, below 
Williamsport, when a large body of Yankee cavalry made a 
sudden attack on the guard of our wagon trains. This gaard 
consisted mainly of dismounted men called " Company Q,." The 
latter, aided by teamsters and others, under General Pettigrew, 
did good fighting and saved the trains, though at the lamentable 
loss of General Pettigrew himself. 

As after Sharpsburg in 1862, so now, after Gettysburg, both 
armies sought much-needed repose, and there were no active opera- 
tions of importance in which the Ninth North Carolina (First Cav.) 

426 North Carolina Tegops, 1861-'65. 

participated until tiie Federal advance at Culpeper. After that 
came the hard fights at Jack's Shop and the second and third 
Brandy Station, resulting in a highly complimentary order from 
General Stuart to Colonel Baker for the part taken in these 
actions and leading to Colonel Baker's promotion; but in con- 
sequence of a wound he was assigned to special duty. This 
also caused the promotion of Lieutenant-Colonel J. B. Gordon 
to Brigadier-General, who was put in charge of a North Caro- 
lina brigade composed of the Ninth (First Cav.), Nineteenth 
(Second Cav.) and Fifty-ninth (Fourth Cav.) Eegiments. Cap- 
tains Thomas Ruffiu and W. H. Cheek had succeeded to the re- 
spective positions of Colonel and Lieutenant- Colonel of the Ninth, 
and the former was now in command. 

On the 8th of October began the flank movement of General 
Lee on Meade, known as the Bristoe campaign, when occurred 
two of the most striking cavalry events of the war, and in both 
of which the First North Carolina Cavalry led the charge with 
drawn sabres in a most heroic manner: 

Fiist. On the 13th Stuart got caught in a very tight place, 
under the following circumstances: In the very rapid marches 
of Meade on several converging roads, with Stuart in hot pur- 
suit, the latter, at night-fall, found himself completely hemmed 
in between two parallel corps of the Federal army. Escape 
seemed absolutely impossible, and as his command had, as yet, 
been unobserved, he resolved on the policy of a painful silence 
to await what the morning would bring forth. At early dawn 
both of the Federal columns were put in motion and conceal- 
ment was no longer possible; so, as a last desperate resort, he ran 
his horse artillery up an elevated point and opened upon the 
camp at Auburn Mill, as furnishing the best point of escape, and 
hoping to throw, the Yankees into confusion and panic, but the 
latter were all ready for action, and in an instant three heavy 
lines of infantry skirmishers advanced upon his guns and 
threatened his whole command with capture. Stuart ordered 
Gordon' to charge, and Gordon called for the First North 
Carolina Cavalry. Colonel Ruffin led the charge, but at the 

Ninth Regiment. 427 

first fire the gallant Colonel fell mortally wounded, and there 
was a recoil of the ranks, when Major Barringer dashed to 
the front and rallied the command; and again the charge 
was made, and now with complete success, scattering the Fed- 
erals in all directions. In the wild disorder and turmoil of 
these charges, Stuart limbered up his guns, struck a gallop and 
escaped round the Federal rear without loss, save those who fell 
in the charges — about fifty. Major Barringer and about thirty 
of his men charged clear through the Union lines and joined 
Stuart down the Run. One of the thirty, private Carver, Com- 
pany G, came out with seven wounds, but gallantly stuck to his 
saddle. Gordon and Barringer were both slightly wounded, but 
each continued on duty. 

Second. A few days afterwards, on the 19th of October, Stuart 
and Kilpatrick fought at Broad Run, on the Warrenton pike, 
near the village of Buckland, eight miles from Warrenton. 
After a few rounds Stuart feigned a retreat, but he arranged with 
Fitzhugh Lee, who was at Auburn, a few miles off, at a proper 
hour to attack the Yankees in flank and rear with both carbine 
and artillery. Stuart then retired, with slight skirmishing, to 
within three miles of Warrenton, when he paused for the expected 
signal. At the first gun Stuart's whole command faced about 
with drawn sabres with orders to charge. Gordon was in front, 
with Rosser and Young on either flank, a little to the rear, as 
supports. The First North Carolina Cavalry again held the lead 
and occupied the pike. General Gordon now rode to the front and 
simply said: "Major Barringer, charge that Yankee line and 
break it." The Federals were about three hundred yards down 
the pike, in spendid array. Barringer gave the commands: 
"Forward, trot, march!" After a few paces, seeing the ranks 
all well aligned, he added the command: "Gallop, march"; and 
after a few more paces, he turned to the regimental bugler ("Lit- 
tle Litaker") to sound the charge. This was answered with a 
similar call from every regiment and a terrific yell. In a few 
moments more the whole command was down upon the 'Federals 
with drawn sabres. The latter stood their ground until the 

428 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

column came within less than fifty yards of the extreme front, 
when the whole line emptied their pistols and carbines upon our 
devoted heads, and then deliberately wheeled about and galloped 
off. The volley, of course, checked our speed and produced 
some confusion all through our advanced lines; but in an instant 
more the charge was again sounded and the pursuit continued. 
The Yankees, however, preserved good order, wheeling and 
firing at occasional intervals for more than a mile. At last 
Major Barringer ordered the dashing Captain Cowles, of Com- 
pany A, to break their ranks. This was speedily done, and the 
whole retreat became a rout. In the meantime Fitzhugh Lee 
had also routed the rear, in reserve, at Broad Run. This com- 
pleted the panic, extending several miles and late into the night, 
with the capture of Custer's headquarters train, many prisoners 
and horses and a large amount of arms and equipments. This 
action is known as the "Buckland Races," and for it the First 
North Carolina Cavalry was highly complimented by General 
Stuart and others; and in a special letter to Major Barringer, 
shortly afterwards, General Stuart refers to his command "as a 
pattern for others." 

During the fall occurred the mishap at Rappahannock Station, 
with heavy loss to General Lee, and forcing him back to the Rapi- 
dan, the North Carolina brigade doing severe fighting at Stevens- 
burg and other points. Then came the Mine Run movement, in 
which Meade attempted to cross the Rapidan and force General 
Lee to fight; but within three days he himself recrossed the river, 
the First North Carolina Cavalry fighting at Parker's Store, Rac- 
coon Ford and elsewhere. 

Both armies now went into winter- quarters, our brigade at 
Milford Station, but still picketing the Rapidan, over twenty 
miles off. During the winter no special cavalry movements 
occurred until about the 1st of March, when the Kilpatrick- 
Dahlgren raid occurred, and three hundred men from the North 
Carolina brigade, under Colonel William H. Cheek, made a 
night attack on the raiders, near Atlee's Station, and completely 
routed them, capturing many prisoners, with valuable arms, etc. 

Ninth Regiment. 429 

This was really one of the most brilliant feats of the war, and 
Colonel Cheek was highly complimented for it. 

On the 4th of May, 1864, began the Wilderness campaign 
under General Grant. Just at this time £he North Carolina 
brigade was transferred from the divison of Hampton to that of 
Major-General W. H. F. Lee, and the Forty-first North Carolina 
Regiment (Third Cav.), Colonel John A. Baker, took the place of 
the Fifty-ninth North Carolina (Fourth Cav.), then in Eastern 
North Carolina recruiting and picketing under Lieutenant-Colonel 
R. Barringer, by special detail. At the time of Grant's advance 
the First North Carolina Cavalry was on picket along the Rapi- 
dan, and both Colonel Cheek and Major Cowles rendered valuable 
service to General R. E. Lee in checking the advance and in 
watching and reporting hostile movements; and also in captur- 
ing some four hundred prisoners. 

On the 9th of May, 1864, Sheridan, with twelve thousand 
cavalry and a long train of horse artillery, started from near 
Fredericksburg on his famous raid upon Richmond. The North 
Carolina brigade, under Gordon, was hastily drawn in from 
scattered points and joined in the pursuit; the whole under 
Stuart in person. To meet this most formidable movement, 
Stuart could take from the army only three of his brigades — 
Wickham's, Lomax's and Gordon's — say four thousand men, or 
one to three, trusting to Richmond itself to make the main defense. 
Stuart, with the brigades of Wickham and Lomax, sought to 
get ahead of the raiders by forced marches, while Gordon, with 
his North Carolinians, almost alone, undertook the work of har- 
assing the enemy and impeding his progress. This involved 
incessant fighting, both night and day, with heavy losses of both 
men and animals. The First North Carolina Cavalry especially 
suffered severely, among the wounded being Colonel Cheek. 
Fortunately Stuart got ahead of the raiders, and at the Yel- 
low Tavern, near the city defenses, with Gordon in their rear, 
the final conflict closed with the retreat of Sheridan, but with 
the irreparable loss of our great leaders, Stuart and Gordon, 
both mortally wounded and both soon to die. 

430 North Carolina Troops, 1§61-'65. 

During these and the next thirty days were fought the great 
battles of the First and Second Wilderness, Spottsylvania Court 
House and Second Cold Harbor, resulting in the virtual defeat 
of Grant in his direct attempt on the Confederate Capital and 
forcing him to cross the James and settle down on the long and 
tedious siege of Petersburg and Richmond. During this same 
period were also fought the great cavalry battle between Hamp- 
ton and Sheridan at Trevilian Station and the lesser actions at 
Todd's Tavern, White Hall, Haw's Shop, Hanover Court House 
and Ashland. All of these were in thickly wooded sections, 
where the men were often required to dismount and fight with 
carbines. In fact, as the war advanced, the sabre grew into less 
and less favor, and the policy of the great Tennessee cavalryman. 
General N. B. Forest, was adopted, of using the "revolver on 
horse and the rifle on foot." With these he accomplished won- 
ders, and left a name among the first in fame as a mounted 

And now, also, came many, changes in the North Carolina 
Cavalry Brigade. Gordon being dead and Cheek absent, wounded, 
the command of the brigade devolved on Colonel John A. Baker, 
of the Third North Carolina Cavalry; that of the Ninth Regi- 
ment on Lieutenant-Colonel R. Barringer. On the 6th of June 
the latter received his commission as a Brigadier-General, and 
the regiment was turned over to Lieutenant-Colonel W. H. H. 
Cowles as ranking officer present. 

This closes the personal connection of the writer of this sketch 
with his famous regiment, and the remainder of the sketch will 
consist of his knowledge of it as a portion of the Barringer 

When General Grant once started to cross the James River 
it was no time to fight battles other than those forced upon him. 
The object was rather to gain positions and see who could com- 
mand the river crossings and best secure any heights overlook- 
ing the two beleaguered cities. 

On the 7th of June the plan of his movements was fairly 
developed, and the Confederate cavalry was ordered to harass him 

Ninth Regiment. 431 

accordingly. My brigade (embracing the First, Second, Third and 
Fifth North Carolina Cavalry) was detached and hastened to the 
lower fords of the Chickahominy. On the 13th we had fol- 
lowed the main Federal column to Wilcox's Landing and by 
the 18th we too had also hastened round by Richmond and 
taken position two miles south of Petersburg. During these 
rapid movements we had had several severe skirmishes with the 
enemy, especially at Malvern Hill, Nantz' Shop, Herring Creek, 
Crenshaw's and The Rocks, the First Cavalry often leading. 
On the 21st of June, while guarding the Petersburg & Weldon 
Railroad at the Davis farm, just below Petersburg, my pickets noti- 
fied me of the approach of a large Yankee force of infantry, mani- 
festly with the view of seizing and holding the railroad at that 
point. We were wholly without support, but the thick under- 
growth and other surroundings favored a vigorous resistance in 
a dismounted fight. I selected a high point for my horse artil- 
lery under McGregor, and as far as possible screened it from the 
enemy's view. I also kept the Fifth Cavalry (Sixty-third 
North Carolina Regiment) mounted, in reserve to support 
McGregor and otherwise act as emergency might require. 
I then dismounted the First, Second and Third Cavalry, 
and formed two heavy skirmish lines, well concealed in thick 
undergrowth in front of the railroad, with instructions for 
the first line not to iire until the Federals were in less than 
one hundred yards of them, and then after a single volley to 
slowly retire on the second line, where the real fight was to be 
made. At this juncture also the full battery of four guns was to 
open. The plan worked well and proved a complete success. The 
Federals were not only driven back, but in the panic that followed 
the Third Cavalry, led by Colonel John A. Baker and my Aid, 
Lieutenant F. C. Foard, rushed upon the Federal ranks and 
captured many prisoners; but in the confusion which ensued 
both Baker and Foard were also in turn captured. The Yankee 
force in front of us turned out to be Barlow's Division of infantry, 
four thousand strong, and were driven back with a loss of forty dead 

432 iSToETH Caeolina Teoops, 1861-'65. 

on the field and twenty prisoners, including a Lieutenant-Colonel 
and two Captains taken. My own loss "was twenty-seven killed, 
wounded and missing. 

I am thus particular with the details of this little action be- 
cause a question was afterwards raised as to the good faith and 
fidelity of Colonel John A. Baker, of the Third, in so advancing 
his lines and thus exposing himself and command to the risk 
of capture. As a matter of fact. Colonel Baker was never regu- 
larly exchanged as a prisoner of war, nor did he ever return to 
his regiment, and he was afterwards openly accused of having 
taken the oath of allegiance, while in prison, to the United States 
Government; but I do not think any one, at the time of the 
fight, dreamed of treachery, and he was highly complimented by 
all for the spirit and skill with which he led his men in the short 
advance he made. As it was, too, our main loss fell on his 

At the same time that this action was going on General Grant 
was arranging for the famous Kautz and Wilson raid, and that 
night the raiders, several thousand strong, moved on our right 
flank, with' every kind of machinery, for the purpose of tearing 
up and destroying the Southside and Richmond & Danville 
Railroads as far south as Staunton River bridge. Early on the 
22d General William H. F. Lee put his picket line in charge of 
Chambliss' Brigade and one of my regiments (the Third), and 
with my other three (First, Second and Fifth) and Dearing's 
small brigade he started in pursuit of the raiders. 

We first struck them at Reams' Station, ten miles south of Peters- 
burg, on the Petersburg & Weldon Railroad, where they had de- 
stroyed the depot, and then made straight across the country by 
Dinwiddle Court House for the Southside road, on towards Burke- 
ville. That night the work of destruction went ceaselessly forward; 
for twenty miles the entire track was taken up, the cross-ties made 
up into great piles and the iron laid across them so as to insure 
complete destruction by fire. In the same way the work was 
started the next day on the Richmond & Danville lines. In 
the meantime scouting parties were sent all over the country to 

Ninth Eegimbnt. 433 

gather up horses, to carry off supplies, and to arrest leading 
citizens. In this way the whole country was overrun, many 
buildings set on fire and the track of the invaders made one 
complete scene of desolation. We had several fights in the pur- 
suit without any decided results, until about noon of the 23d, 
when General Lee managed, by a forced march, to get in be- 
tween their two columns. This occurred at a place known as 
Black's and White's. It was Dearing's day to be in front, but 
his force was not equal to the work in hand. He was just in 
the act of being driven off and all of our artilleVy (two batteries) 
exposed to capture, when the First North Carolina Cavalry, under 
Major Cowles, was dismounted and hurled against the advancing 
foe. This saved our guns but did not check the enemy's progress. 
Just at this juncture, however, a detachment of the Second 
Cavalry, under Major W. P. Roberts, managed to get in th& 
Federal rear and right across the railroad track. And now for 
several hours the battle raged. Whole trees and saplings were 
cut down with shells and minie-balls, until night ended the con- 
flict. That night the enemy abandoned the field and struck 
straight across the country for the Staunton River bridge on the 
Richmond & Danville line. In this action Colonel C. M. An- 
drews was mortally wounded and about half a dozen other 
officers were killed or wounded ; and so completely were the 
men and animals exhausted, that on the next day a short rest 
was taken. It was also decided that the two brigades should 
now separate. Dearing was to move on the enemy's left flank, 
while my three regiments were to follow the enemy's line of 
march directly to the Staunton River bridge. This was the 
most important structure on General Robert E. Lee's whole line 
of communication for supplying his army. It had only tempo- 
rary defenses, and was guarded by a small force of Junior and 
Senior Reserves, with a few disabled soldiers, led by some gal- 
lant Confederate officers who chanced to be present. But so 
admirable was the spirit of the men in this great emergency 
that they successfully resisted several preliminary attacks until 
the Barringer Brigade came up, when a vigorous assault upou 

434 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'66. 

the Federal rear as well as their front forced them to retire and 
seek safety by a night march down the Staunton River ma 
Boydton and Lawrenceville. 

My command had started out on this expedition with some 
twelve hundred effective mounted men, but so terrible had been 
the marching and so intense the heat, and so incessant the fight- 
ing, that we now found ourselves reduced to less than three hun- 
dred men and animals equal to the task of further pursuit. In this 
emergency a small detail was made from the Ninth Regiment (First 
Cav.), under Captain N. P. Foard, Company F, of that regiment, 
to follow the track of the enemy, while the rest of the brigade 
made a forced march on their left flank, with a view of driving 
them into the trap so well planned by Hampton and Fitz Lee 
at Sappony Church and Monk's Neck. Here the rout was 
complete, including the loss of all their artillery, several hun- 
dred horses and fifteen hundred prisoners. 

The utter destruction of this great raiding party now gave my 
brigade a much-needed rest. This enabled me, for the first time, 
to turn my attention to the vital work of organization, drill and 
discipline — a work always essential to cavalry success. In the 
First Cavalry especially did the old spirit show itself of 
making every man feel a self-reliance equal to every emergency. 
More than half of this regiment were armed and equipped from 
the enemy. One company (F) boasted that its entire outfit had 
been taken from the foe. . 

At last, on the 28th of July, we were hastened to the north 
bank of the James to meet a threatened move of the enemy on 
Richmond. We had a sharp engagement at Fuzzle's Mill, when 
the Yankee cavalry suddenly withdrew and re-appeared in force 
below Petersburg. We, too, soon followed, when on the 14th 
of August the whole division was again ordered north of Rich- 
mond, where we found the enemy within six miles of the city. 

A series of engagements now followed, especially at Fisher's 
Farm, White Oak Swamp and White's Tavern. In the fight at 
White Oak Swamp General Chambliss lost his life in a vain 
attempt to rally his men from a panic into which they had fallen. 

Ninth Regiment. 435 

General W. H. F. Lee in person rallied the Virginians and 
formed a new line, with the First and Second Cavalry in 
front, which swept all before them. During these actions the 
brigade suffered severely, especially in officers. Captains Bryan 
and Cooper, of the Second Cavalry, and Lieutenant Morrow, of 
the First, were killed on the field — all officers of rare merit. On 
our return to the south side of the James we found that the enemy 
had gained possession of the Petersburg & Weldon Eailroad, and 
on the 21st of August, General Mahone, with a large force of in- 
fantry and cavalry, had been ordered to dislodge him. My 
position was on the extreme right, along the Poplar Spring road. 
All four regiments were actually engaged and swept everything 
before them. But, much to our 'surprise, the attack by the in- 
fantry somehow failed of success, and we, too, were forced to 
retire with a loss of sixty-eight killed, wounded and missing. 

On the 25th of August occurred the great combined action of 
cavalry, infantry and artillery at Reams' Station. On this oc- 
casion. General William H. F. Lee being ill and absent, the 
command of the division devolved on myself, while that of the 
brigade fell to Colonel W. H. Cheek, of the Ninth North Caro- 
lina. General Hampton commanded the mounted forces, and it 
was arranged that while the cavalry attacked the enemy in his 
front along the railroad, A. P. Hill, with his infantry, was to 
assail his intrenched works in the flank and rear. Never was 
success more complete. We regained the railroad, captured 
twenty-three hundred prisoners and took immense quantities of 
small arms and intrenching tools, with untold numbers of can- 
non and other munitions of war. Nearly»all the forces engaged 
on the part of the infantry in this great battle were from North 
Carolina, and General R. E. Lee wrote Governor Z. B. Vance a 
special letter complimentary to the troops of the State, in which 
he also made special reference to the conspicuous part taken in 
the action by the cavalry brigade of General Barringer. 

Thus in ten days our division had crossed and recrossed the 
James River; had marched to Stony Creek and then back to 
Reams' Station, making nearly one hundred miles night and day 
marching, and in the meantime fighting eight severe actions. 

436 NoETH Carolina Teoops, 1861-'65. 

Next followed an action at McDowell's farm on the 27th of 
September, capturing a major and twenty other prisoners, but 
with severe loss to us in the death of the brave Captain Turner 
and other meritorious officers. 

At Jones' farm there was a joint fight on the part of our in- 
fantry and cavalry, in which several hundred prisoners were 
taken, most of them by Beale's Brigade. During October cav- 
alry operations were exceedingly active. We fought with varied 
success at Boisseau's farm. Gravelly Run and Hargrove's house; 
but the most important of all was the battle at Wilson's farm 
on the 27th of October, when Grant seized the Boydton plank- 
road, and we repeated the operations at Reams' Station and 
with like success. In all these actions the Ninth Regiment took 
a leading part, and in the last fight it and the Sixty-third (Fifth 
Cav.) Regiment were conspicuously prominent, in fact, so com- 
plete was our victory that during the night Grant abandoned his 
position and fell back to his former lines. In this action my 
brigade lost seventy killed and wounded, chiefly from the Ninth 

In November came off Hampton's famous cattle raid. This 
was one of the most striking cavalry achievements of the war, 
and deserves a passing notice. The cavalry held General Lee's 
right flank, extending in long, attenuated lines from Petersburg 
along the Petersburg & Weldon Railroad beyond Stony Creek. 
For this raid the whole line was virtually stripped of its protection, 
and the troops under General Hampton moved by circuitous routes 
to the enemy's position at City Point. There the hostile guards 
and picket lines wer^ forced at the point of the sabre and a herd . 
of cattle, numbering two thousand four hundred and eighty-six 
head, safely driven out and conducted back to our camp. Of 
course the exposure to our lines was very great, but the plans 
for deceiving the enemy and keeping up appearances were well 
carried out by the dashing P. M. B. Young, of Georgia, who, 
by means of camp-fires, bands playing and artillery discharges 
kept up a constant show of force. Meantime Rosser, with his 
Virginians, struck directly for the Federal camps, while Wil- 

Ninth Regiment. 437 

liam H. F. Lee was ordered to make sure our lines of retreat, 
and in this work it fell to my brigade to do some pretty hard 
fighting at Belcher's Mill and other well-guarded points; but 
so admirably was the whole scheme carried out that scarcely a 
man or animal was lost. The distance marched embraced a 
circuit of not less than thirty miles, and yet in neither night nor 
day marching did a single mishap befall us. 

On the 8th of December was repeated another of the ceaseless 
attempts of the Federals to seize the Petersburg & Weldon Rail- 
road, this time by General Warren at the village of Belfield. Here 
the Junior and Senior Reserves of North Carolina and Virginia 
made an admirable defense of the bridge until the infantry and cav- 
alry came up, when the enemy was forced to retire. The main pur- 
suit was made by my brigade, and especially the Ninth Regiment, 
two squadrons of which, under Captain Dewey, making a splen- 
did mounted charge. 

The losses of the brigade were summed up for the campaign just 
closed as follows: Killed, ninety-nine; wounded, three hundred 
and seventy-eight; missing and captured, one hundred and twenty- 
seven; total, six hundred and four. Distributed thus: First Cav- 
alry, one hundred and thirty-eight; Second, one hundred and five; 
Third, one hundred and fifty-three; Fifth, two hundred and eight. 
The enemy's loss in killed and wounded was estimated at eight 
hundred, with prisoners taken by us at fifteen hundred. 

The brigade now went into winter-quarters near Belfield, 
where we erected cantonments, and where we enjoyed a fair 
degree of rest and recreation, disturbed, however, by long 
marches for picket duty and occasionally some severe fighting. 
The winter was a hard one ; forage and other supplies were 
in very limited quantities and sometimes wholly insufficient, 
often exposing the men to sore trials and temptations in 
securing necessaries for man and beast. Despite all these draw- 
backs, the brigade gradually grew in strength and numbers, 
while as a matter of fact most of the cavalry commands in Vir- 
ginia were greatly reduced in both efficiency and numbers. The 
Virginians were beset by constant temptations to seek their 

438 NoETH Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

homes and the social attractions surrounding them. On the 
other hand, the mounted men from South Carolina, Georgia 
and other more distant States found it exceedingly difficult to 
keep up their " mounts," and were also hard to get back them- 
selves when once allowed to go to their far off homes. In this 
connection it will be recalled that in the winter of 1864-65, 
when Sherman threatened South Carolina, Hampton, with his 
entire command, was ordered south to meet the Federal cavalry 
under Kilpatrick. And yet, so reduced was the main body of 
his force that the Legislature of South Carolina had to appro- 
priate a million of dollars in gold to remount them. North 
Carolina, on the other hand, occupied a happy medium between 
these extremes, and under an admirable system of " horse de- 
tails " and the thorough discipline of her brigades most of her 
regiments were well kept up. This counted in several different 
ways; we came to be relied upon, not only for the ordinary picket 
duty, but in close quarters and hot contests the superior officers 
almost invariably looked to the North Carolina commands for 
the hard fighting. 

Under all these disadvantages opened the campaign of 1865, 
and when, on the 29th of March, Sheridan started on his grand 
flank movement it was seen and felt by all that his heaviest 
blows would have to be met by the North Carolinians, then 
guarding General R. E. Lee's extreme right. My own four 
regiments then averaged about four hundred effective men each, 
with the prospect of large additions on the way with new mounts, 
but events soon crowded upon us so rapidly that these were of 
little avail. Sheridan's force was not less than ten thousand 
mounted men, largely centered around Dinwiddle Court House, 
well supported by infantry near at hand. W. H. F. Lee had 
under him my brigade and the two small brigades of Roberts 
and Beale, numbering all told not exceeding three thousand men, 
with which to meet Sheridan and his host. Major-General Fitz- 
hugh Lee was then in command of all the cavalry of .the Army of 
Northern Virginia, and was at Five Forks, several miles north- 
west of Dinwiddle Court House, virtually placing Sheridan 

Ninth Regiment. 439 

exactly between himself and Major-General W. H. F. Lee at 
Stony Creek, nineteen miles off. Worse still, rain had fallen 
in torrents and the streams were all overflowing. This forced 
us to make a long detour in order to unite the two cavalry com- 
mands of W. H. F. Lee and Fitz Lee. But on the 31st of 
March we had overcome all difficulties and had successfully 
reached the White Oak road near Five Forks. Here a small 
stream known as Chamberlain Run separated us from Sheridan 
at Dinwiddle Court House. 

At this time I had with me only three regiments, the Ninth, 
Nineteenth and Sixty-third (First, Second and Fifth Cav.), the 
Forty-first (Third Cav.) being in charge of my wagon trains. 
On approaching Chamberlain Run it was found that the Federal 
cavalry had crossed it and was advancing to attack us. I was 
ordered by W. H. F. Lee to dismount my command and meet this 
advance. The Fifth Cavalry was in front, supported by the First 
and Second, with Beale's Brigade in reserve and McGregor's 
Battery in position. In this order we not only speedily checked 
the enemy, but soon drove him in panic and rout, forcing him 
across the stream, over waist-deep, all in the wildest haste and 
confusion. Just at this moment General W. H. F. Lee ordered 
one of his regiments from Beale's Brigade to make a mounted 
charge; through some mistake of the order only one squadron 
of the regiment made the charge, and this was repulsed with 
frightful loss. This enabled the enemy to rally, and he in 
turn finally forced my regiments back. In this short conflict 
my loss was twenty officers killed and over one hundred men 
killed and wounded. Among the killed were Colonel McNeill 
and Lieutenant-Colonel Shaw, of the Sixty-third (Fifth Cav.) 
Regiment, and among the wounded. Colonel Gaines, commanding 
the Nineteenth (Second Cav.), and Major McLeod, of the Ninth 
(First Cav.). 

Both sides now began to fortify the lines up and down Cham- 
berlain Run, awaiting the inevitable conflict rapidly gathering 
around us. At last, about 3 o'clock in the afternoon. General W. 
H. F. Ijee received a written order from General Fitz Lee to 

440 North Caeolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

drive the Federals from our front, in aid of some general move- 
ment then about to take place. This was my day to be in front, 
and of course it naturally fell to my command to attempt the 
work indicated; but in view of the fact that one of my regi- 
ments (Third Cavalry) was still absent, and because of the further 
fact that my other three regiments had all suifered so severely in 
the morning, I asked General William H. F. Lee to request 
(1st) the withdrawal of the order, and (2d) if this were not 
possible, to require one of his other brigades to lead in the 
movement. General W. H. F. Lee wrote to Fitz Lee, urging 
the withdrawal as indicated, but was told that military necessity 
required its performance. General W. H. F. Lee also kindly 
considered my request to substitute one of his other brigades 
instead of my own for the attack, but pleaded their reduced 
strength as a reason why he should not risk a change. I then 
asked him for any suggestions as to the best mode of attack, as 
in any event there would be great doubt of success and the loss 
might be very heavy. He declined making any suggestions on 
this point and left all to myself. I then gave him my opinion 
of what I thought the only hope of success. The Run was still 
very full, covering the bottoms for seventy-five yards on either 
side of the channel, with only one crossing for mounted troops, 
and the banks everywhere obstructed by logs, brush and other 
impediments. My plan was to put the First Cavalry in on 
the left, dismounted in line, and thus attack and draw the fire 
of the enemy, and then, at the proper moment, to make a charge 
in column across the ford against the enemy's main works, the 
troops making this charge to be closely supported by my re- 
maining' regiment, mounted or dismounted, as circumstances 
might require. General Lee cordially assented to this plan of 
attack, with promise of active support from his other brigades, 
if necessary. The Second Cavalry was selected to make the 
charge in column and the Fifth was to remain dismounted, with 
bridle in hand, until the critical moment should arrive, to deter- 
mine the part it should take. Every effort was made to shield 
all these preliminary arrangements, and then suddenly, every- 

Ninth Regiment. 441 

thing being ready, Colonel William H. Cheek, of the First, 
formed his line and boldly entered the stream. This (as ex- 
pected) seemed to really disconcert the enemy, and they at once 
concentrated a very rapid fire upon Cheek and his men. When 
about half way over, and the enemy's fire was fully directed to 
that point, I ordered the Second Cavalry, under Major Lock- 
hart, to make his charge in a close column by sections of eight, 
with instructions, on crossing the stream, to deploy both to the 
right and left, as circumstances might require. The Fifth was 
also instructed to follow, partly mounted and partly dismounted, 
and adopt the same line of movement. Beale in the meantimebeing 
stationed by General Lee so as to help either wing, as the emergency 
might require. The whole plan succeeded to perfection. Lockhart 
drove the enemy from his works opposite the ford, while Cheek 
swept the lines to his left, and Erwin, of the Sixty-third Regiment, 
carried the right. In ten minutes the whole Yankee line was in 
flight and the Confederates in full pursuit. This was kept up for 
some distance and with great slaughter, until night closed upon us 
and a halt was ordered within some two miles of Dinwiddie Court 

About 3 o'clock next morning we received orders to retire to 
our former position north of -Chamberlain Run, where we re- 
mained to await the result of the great battle of Five Forks, 
then about opening. 

My losses in this last attack and assault amounted to ten offi- 
cers and nearly one hundred men killed and wounded. Among 
the killed were Captains Coleman and Dewey and Lieutenants 
Arrafield, Blair and Powell, of the Ninth; Lieutenant Hathaway, 
of the Nineteenth, and Captain Harris and Lieutenant Lindsay of 
the Sixty-third, and two others. Among the wounded were Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Cowles and Captains Anthony, Iredell, Johnston 
and Smith, with Lieutenants Mast and Steele, of the Ninth; Lieu- 
tenants Jordan and Turner, of the Nineteenth; Lieutenants Nott, 
Sockwell and Wharton, of the Sixty-third — all severely. I had 
only two field officers left in the three regiments — Colonel Cheek 

442 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65. 

and Major Lockhart. The former had his hat struck and horse 
killed; Loqkhart escaped unhurt, to get a ball the next day, 
which he still bears. 

Despite these terrible losses and the havoc of death among 
them, when the men rushed upon the enemy's works cheer after 
cheer rent the air, and the victorious troopers of the First North 
Carolina Cavalry Brigade still cherished hope that General R. E. 
Lee would win in the final mighty struggle then at hand; but 
next day saw another sight. In the disastrous defeat at Five 
Forks on the 1st of April the last hopes of the Confederacy 
went down in darkness and despair. It is believed that this 
cavalry triumph at Chamberlain Run on the 31st of March, 1865, 
was the last marked victory won by our arms. Next day Sheri- 
dan assaulted our works at Five Forks and drove all before him. 
My brigade was still on the White Oak road, on our extreme 
right, and as his victorious legions swept our immediate right 
the Ninth and Sixty-third Regiments did some of their old-time 
fighting. The Ninth was on picket some two miles distant, but 
under proper orders the whole command took up its line of 
march for the rendezvous at Pott's, a few miles off on the South- 
side Railroad, where also the next day Lieutenant-Colonel Roger 
Moore, of the Forty-first, appeared with his command and the 
remnant of our trains. 

Next day, April 1st, at 12 m., we heard of the fall of 
Petersburg, and got orders to join in the retreat. That night 
we camped near Namozine Church, twenty-five miles above 
Petersburg, covering the extreme rear on that line. Early 
on the morning of April 3d we took position at Namozine 
Church to await the advance of the Federal cavalry in its 
victorious rush with overwhelming numbers. With less than 
eight hundred men in the line, I had to receive the shock of 
over eight thousand; but even this difference could have been 
met with some hope of successful resistance had not a further 
ord er come to " fight to the last." Among other dispositions, I was 
directed to dismount one regiment, the Sixty-third, under Captain 
John R. Erwin (acting Major), and conceal it in some out- 

Ninth Regiment. 443 

buildings and along an old fence row, with a view to a possible 
surprise. But all in vain : in less than thirty minutes my 
mounted lines were overwhelmed with numbers and the Sixty- 
third exposed to certain capture. Orders for this regiment 
to retire had all miscarried or been unheeded, when I myself, as 
a last resort, dashed across the field with two of my staff to 
guide them in pei-son through a heavy wood I still saw unoccu- 
pied by the enemy. This saved the dismounted men, though 
their horses were lost; but subsequently, in my efforts to rejoin 
the division, I was deceived by a squad of Sheridan's scouts in 
Confederate uniforms and was myself captured. The command 
now devolved upon Colonel W. H. Cheek, of the Ninth; but two 
days afterwards he also fell into the enemy's hands. 

So far as I could learn, from this on to the surrender at Ap- 
pomattox on the 9th of April, the fighting was merely a round 
of hand-to-hand combats, or in small special details in conjunc- 
tion sometimes with other commands. All this tended to disin- 
tegration and independent action. Probably not over one hun- 
dred took the paroles tendered at Appomattox, though I have 
never yet met one of the "old First" who did not get the bene- 
fit of General Grant's generous terms and carry home with him 
a good cavalry horse with which to start his "battle for a crop" 
in the memorable year of 1865. 

In this limited sketch no attempt has been made to note the 
frequent changes in regimental commanders cpnstantly occur- 
ring from promotion, death and other causes, but it is proper to 
add here that the four doing the largest service in the cam- 
paign of 1864 and 1865 were Colonel W. H. Cheek, of the First 
Cavalry; Colonel W. P. Roberts, of the Second; Lieutenant- 
Colonel Roger Moore, of the Third, and Colonel James H. Mc- 
Neill, of the Fifth. They were all wonderfully efficient officers — 
ever skillful and brave, and in every emergency equal to the 


RuFus Baeeingee. 

1. George S. Dewey, Captain, Co. H. 3. C. J. Iredell, Captain, Co. E. 

8. Kerr Craige, Captain, Co. I. 4. Jesse H. Person, 1st Lieut., Co. E. 

6. Samuel B, Gibson, Ist Lieut., Co. K. 



By colonel W. H. CHEEK. 

General Barringer, in his preceding sketch of the First North 
Carolina Cavalry, so fully described the organization, instruction 
and movements of our regiment up to the time of his promotion to 
Brigadier-General in June, 1864, that it is impossible for me at 
this late day, with the limited data at my command, to enlarge 
or to improve upon his narrative. There are, however, several 
engagements, during the time covered by General Barringer's 
article which I consider so well calculated to illustrate the talent 
of our officers and the courage and discipline of the enlisted 
men, and which added so largely to building up the reputation 
of the regiment, that I desire to go back and bring them for- 
ward and place them in a more conspicuous position than he has 
given them. 

And first in order of time comes the attack of Company B 
upon the gun-boats in Roanoke Eiver in the spring of 1862. At 
that time the preservation of the railroad bridge at Weldon was 
of the utmost importance to the Confederacy. So, when the 
regiment was returning from Eastern North Carolina to rejoin 
the Army of Northern Virginia, Company B, Captain Whitaker, 
was detached to do picket duty down the Roanoke, and especially 
to watch the approach of the enemy's gun-boats. Captain Whit- 
aker was a large planter on the river, and once when he was at 
home, and the Company was under command of First Lieuten- 
ant A. B. Andrews, the enemy made an effort with three gun- 
boats to ascend the river, his object being the destruction of the 
railroad bridge at Weldon. Lieutenant Andrews (now Colonel 
A. B. Andrews, First Vice-President of the Southern Railway 

446 North Cakolina Troops, 1861-65. . 

System), very skillfully attacked him from the bluffs and other 
favorable points, and so harassed and punished him that at 
Hamilton he abandoned the expedition and returned to Ply- 
mouth. This engagement of cavalry with gun-boats was a novel 
proceeding, a new feature in warfare, and the first of the kind 
that happened in our army. This success of Lieutenant Andrews 
shows the wonderful capacity of the officers and men of this 
celebrated command to contend with an enemy on water as well 
as when mounted on horses or dismounted as infantry. Lieu- 
tenant Andrews has kindly furnished me with the following 
account of his operations: 


"On the morning of July 9, 1862 (I think this date is correct) 
a courier from Mr. Burroughs came to my camp soon after sun- 
rise with a note stating that three gun-boats had passed James- 
ville, supposed to be on their way to Weldon to destroy the 
Seaboard & Eoanoke E-ailroad bridge at that point, that bridge 
being on the main thoroughfare between General Lee's army and 
the South (as you will recall, that was before the Piedmont Road 
between Danville and Greensboro was built). On reading the 
note I at once had sounded " boots and saddles," and had my 
company of forty-three men mounted, rode down the river, saw 
the boats coming up and waited until they had passed the wharf 
at Williamston, going up towards Weldon. There was great 
excitement in the town. I asked some of the citizens to pilot 
me up the river with a view of attacking the gun-boats from 
different points along the river, leaving two couriers at William- 
ston to report to me in case the boats should turn back and land 
at Williamston. Mr. S. W. Watts (afterwards Judge Samuel 
Watts) and a Mr. Williams went up the river with me. At a 
place called Poplar Point, about ten miles from Williamston, 
I stationed Second Lieutenant J. W. Peel with ten men dis- 
mounted, with instructions to fire upon the first boat, which was 
commanded by Lieutenant Flusser, of the United States Navy, 
and as soon as he delivered his volley to at once remount his 

Ninth Regiment. 447 

horses and report to me at Rainbow Banks, which was two 
miles below or east of Hamilton. Rainbow Banks was a bluff 
on the river, afterward fortified and called Fort Branch. I dis- 
mounted the men I had and arranged them along this bluff, 
taking position on the right of the company myself, and ordered 
the men not to fire until I had commenced firing my pistol, and 
then to fire and reload as rapidly as possible. I waited until 
the front boat, on which Lieutenant Flusser was, had gotten 
opposite me and then commenced firing my pistol, and the forty- 
one men began firing and reloading and firing again as rapidly 
as possible. Lieutenant Flusser was on deck, and I have never 
seen a man display more bravery than he did in command of 
this fleet. Finally the front boat passed us and opened its stern 
gun upon us, shelling the banks so that I was compelled to 
retreat, mount my horses and go to another point higher up the 
river. The men had had no breakfast and it was nearly 1 
o'clock in the day. I went to a farm-house near by and secured 
what provisions they had, giving the men something to eat, and 
then proceeded to Hamilton. On the outskirts of the town I 
was met by a good many citizens who were very much excited, 
and begged me not to go in the town, and asking me to go around 
it, as Lieutenant Flusser had landed one hundred and twenty- 
five marines and two pieces of artillery, and they were satisfied 
that if I made an attack on them in the town of Hamilton that 
they would destroy the town. 

"I waited until they started down the river again and then pro- 
ceeded down the river to undertake to harass them again at 
Rainbow Banks, but they placed a boat in position and shelled 
the banks until the other two had passed, and then commenced 
shelling the banks upon the river so as to enable the first boat to 
pass. I attempted at other places to fire upon them, but they 
were shelling the banks on the river all the way down, and it 
was impossible for us to get another opportunity to attack them. 
I followed them until about nine o'clock, several miles below 
Williamston, then returned to Williamston. 

448 North Carolina Troops, 1861-'65 

"I did not get a man hurt and lost no property, except one relay 
horse which I had left in a stable at Hamilton, and which they 
took. Lieutenant Peel and all the men displayed great coolness 
and bravery. Yours truly, 

"A. B. Andrews." 

Another action deserving of an extended notice is that of 
Jack's Shop, fought on the 22d of September, 1863. As I for- 
tunately have a communication written to the Fayetteville Ob- 
server about the time by an officer of the regiment, which enters 
pretty fully into details, and which is correct save in some par- 
ticulars which that officer may not have had as good an oppor- 
tunity for observation as the writer, I hereby insert it as a part 
of this sketch :